Top Stepmother Complaints

It helps to know that you're not alone, and it helps to know what biofathers are beefing about, too. Here, then (drum roll, Johnny), are some of the top complaints of stepmothers and their partners, in no particular numerical order. How many match your innermost whining? How many do you hear from your partner?

Top Stepmother Complaints

  1. I do all this work, and nobody seems to care. They walk all over me, and nobody says thank you.
  2. I want a baby, and he's had enough.
  3. Everybody watches me to see how I'm doing. I feel on show all the time.
  4. We fight about money. He makes me feel like a stingy, wicked tightwad while I'm just trying to keep to a budget.
  5. When the kids are here, I feel left out. He dotes on his daughter like she's his lover, not me.
  6. My kids are the ordinary, everyday kids to him. When his kids arrive, he drops everything to dote on them.
  7. There's absolutely no privacy around here.
  8. He expects me to take over and be the mother, to make everything better.
  9. He's so scared that his kids will desert him that he won't discipline them, and he buys them anything they want.
  10. His ex is a big part of our lives. He still takes care of her. I know they're her kids too, but they communicate far too much. I don't want her negative energy in my household.

Top Stepfather Complaints

Stepping Stones

Forget the hours of labor giving birth. You're putting in years of labor to raise your stepkids. Yes, you deserve more credit. No, you may not get it, at least right now. The trick is finding the joy in the work for the work's sake.

Top Biofather Complaints

  1. She knew I had kids before she married me, so why is she complaining now?
  2. She's so judgmental of my fathering and of my kids. They're not perfect. They're kids!
  3. She hates it when I talk with my Ex. I have to—we have to work out details. Besides, we were married for a long time. I don't love her, but she's the mother of my children. Plus, when my wife puts down my Ex, she's insulting my kids, too, and insulting my previous choices.
  4. The kids come over, and she withdraws.
  5. I feel stuck in the middle between her and the kids. I'm always playing mediator, making sure that all sides are okay.
  6. She wants a baby, and I already have kids, responsibilities, and financial problems.
  7. She gets jealous of the kids, the attention I pay to them, and what I buy them.
  8. She tries to be this superwoman. She wants the kids to love her like their own mother, and then when they don't, she's too exhausted to be any good to anybody.
  9. She doesn't support me enough. It's all so hard, and both she and my kids should be more supportive of me.
  10. She just doesn't understand why I parent the way I do, the history between the kids and me, or the feelings I have for my kids.

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Stepparenting © 1998 by Ericka Lutz. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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