My name is Christina (23) I live in Cape Town. My boyfriends daughter will be 3 this November.
We have been dating for only 6 months, but it is a serious relationship.
I have met his daughter before but as she is only 2 there is only so much I can do to communicate with her.
I would just like to know if what I am doing is on the right track.. My b’fs ex is a disaster and complete tyrant when it comes to her ex and me. So she does make visiting difficult for my bf.
This weekend was the first weekend we could peacefully be with the toddler.. here is what measure we took to ensure that its a slow and delicate process of me getting to know her.
1. I supplied Dora the Explorer (her fav) colouring pics and a lucky packet. We drew and coloured in together when she wanted to.
2. My bf and I displayed no affection in front of her.
3. Daddy did the discipline
4. I played with her and gave her a lot of attention.
5. Avoided all mention of her mom as not to make her think of her mom to avoid crying for her mom.
6. I understand that I am NOT her mom and did not in any way try and be her mom.
7. I am trying to build a friendship with her first.. whatever happens after that will be based on our relationship.
8. I did not sleep over when his daughter slept over- as per mothers wishes and agreement with myself and my bf.
If you have any other advise for me please share. Its bad enough that the BM is making our lives very very difficult.
Thanks so much.
It’s good to hear from you. As I was reading, I was thinking, “Good for you,” “Great” and “that’s terrific”. You’re surely a SMOM in the making. Your willingness to show the bio-mom that you are respecting her role as the bio-mom is terrific. My ss bio-mom was so upset about my presence, I agreed to stay out of all public functions for the first year we were together. I did it for the same reason you did, it was a tangible attempt to demonstrate that you’re a good person, wanting to have a positive relationship with all members of this newly forming blended family. Good for you!
I bet there are many SMOMS on the site, who’ve recently been through meeting the little ones so I hope you’ll post a question on the general BB as well to get all their ideas. I wrote a couple of Smommentaries about “Connecting with your stepkids”, but she’s a bit little for most of those ideas.
From the sounds of it you’re going to have no trouble connecting with this little girl. It’s wonderful that you and your BF are being so conscious about helping her and giving her the chance to come to you, when she wants to. The Daddy time will be enhanced by your presence and that’s a thoughtful gift to her.
From what you have said, the challenges are going to come from the bio-mom and we have lots of ideas and insights that may help you prepare for your journey with her. Have you read the Smommentaries about the bio-moms? Or the ones about “The movie Miracle” and “do to want to be right or happy” as well as my recent post about “when bio-mom wants winning more than getting along” ? These will all give you some guidance. A good source for you may be to sit down, grab a cold glass of something and read our brand new “Lessons Learned” page. You can find it under the “Get Help” button of the main menu.
You are at the beginning of the journey. Like our SMOMS serenity Prayer says, we can only control so much. Sadly, there’s no way to get bio-moms to be gracious, kind or even civil, if they don’t want to be. Whatever drives her actions, you’re the logical “rage bucket” and it’s good to know that so you can take whatever measures you need to to take care of yourself and your relationship. Ironically, sometimes that kinder and more loving we are as Stepmoms to our stepkids, the more we anger and agitate already hostile bio-moms. This can make life really, really hard for stepkids, SMOMS and bio-dads so the wiser you can be from the beginning, the better for you, your BF and his daughter. (Note: When I use the term hostile bio-mom, it’s a descriptive way to differentiate them from all the kind and civil bio-moms out there.)
Oh, one thing. You mentioned that you don’t show any affection to your BF in front of his daughter…hmmm? What if you just behaved as the joyful, loving, happy person you are and if that results in a happy hug, or kiss or pat on the cheek, why not? Perhaps, just hold off on the x-rated stuff, which you would do anyway, right? Seems to me that you should be able to be yourself AND feel that you’re being appropriate all at the same time.
What a lucky guy your BF is! Sounds like his daughter is lucky as well, even if she doesn’t know it…yet. I hope this reply and all the articles mentioned will give you some support. Also, please do get the ideas of all your sister SMOMS on the BB.
Best Wishes, Cathryn