[up & down]


Up & down

& side to side

This way and that.

Oh, how heart strings can be pulled.

A few weeks ago, I had finally started feeling like we had “it” figured out. Like our family was over the hump of learning these ‘new’ (3 + years old) dynamics. That we were finally a real family.

I was sorely wrong.

One of the kids is doing terribly in school (again) and I can’t mentally take it anymore. I hate that i am a parent of a student that is just like the kids i used to tutor in high school.
-we ask if there’s homework there never is any
-we assign extra study time it takes hours to finally convince him to sit down
-we assign reading time if he actually reads..

We have taken away tablets. we have taken away all forms of entertainment. We have given extra chores. we have threatened private school. we have removed phone privileges. we make him keep his electronics downstairs, away from him. we praise the other one, who is doing better. we give the other one perks. What else is there?

I feel so wrong in saying it, but i want this kid to get a beat down. Not punch-him-in-the-face kind of beat down, but enough to remind him that he’s the child who doesn’t make good decisions and we’re the parents who see what’s best for him.

Last time a spanking was threatened, my prince texted their mom and asked for permission (WHAT?). Who would grant permission? Especially in another house? Who would actually say “YEAH GET HIM!” and encourage it? So he didn’t.

I’ve sat down with 14 and told him i’m disappointed. that i know he is so capable of more. i’ve threatened to remove his door, screw by screw, because privacy is the only thing that’s left and the only thing i am capable of removing from his life. after all, he’s 14. privacy isn’t really a thing anyway.

Shortly after this conversation, on a ride home from work, kids in tow (while sound asleep), my Prince snuck in that he doesn’t want me to have any role in discipline anymore. That when we got married, i agreed to him as the disciplinarian. That’s how things should be.
No mind that two years ago, he told me it was okay for me to have a role.
Nor that my Prince frequently is outside, away from the kids- leaving me as the one to determine how things go.
No mind that we’ve been married almost four years now.

No mind at all.

So in the past few weeks I have moved from a mountain high- feeling as if we had it all. Feeling confident. Happy in our home. Happy in our space. Happy with our family

to a valley of lows

feeling insignificant. feeling worthless, useless, and completely unneeded. He also reminded me that he CAN do it on his own. Something he doesn’t usually forget to keep out of the conversation. So i am reminded that no, I’m not needed. He can do it. He is capable. i am actually not needed. I am actually extra space. i am actually an addition to the problem.
he’d rather they hate him

i’d rather be the hated step parent than be the wife of the father they hate. i’d rather they hate me and love the poop out of their dad.

no, i don’t want to be THE disciplinarian, of course not. but i want to be able to address situations as they come.

there is never time to discuss.
rather, the right time. it’s too late. the kids are home. it’s dinner time. the tv’s on. i want to work outside. i don’t want to sit here. you can’t force me to talk to you.
there is never time.

So here i am. an empty shell.
trying to turn my nights of feeling lost into nights that I dig into God’s word. This is a method I haven’t yet tried, though I know it’s the best. My church is doing nightly readings and they have a plan they’ve shared with us. I’m trying to commit to it and read the daily chapter. Trying to involve my prince. if i read, that’s more time i’m silent. if i read, that’s more time I get to know my savior. what bad could possibly come from this? i’m ashamed it’s taken me 28 years to carve out time to read even a mere chapter per night. now is better than any other time.

so here i am. an empty shell. waiting for His direction. He immediately told me to submit. to do what i’m being asked. not to be spiteful. so my tongue almost has holes in it from me biting my words. my head hangs a little lower. my insides are upside down. and now we’re learning a new journey.

here we go.




7 thoughts on “[up & down]

  1. Oh goodness, just read your post. It is so hard, isn’t it, figuring out how you fit into a blended family dynamic. I know how you feel. That emptiness. But your husband, your kids, need you. Whether they know it or not. And you are so faithful to love them and care for them. Even when it’s hard. And I think it’s so wise of you to be in the Word. You are right…you cannot go wrong getting to know your Savior more. I’ll be praying for peace and wisdom for you as you figure out how to navigate this situation. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Serendipitous Stepmom

    I am thinking of you. I have not experienced this. And I think your feelings are completely valid. Asking you not to address the children when they are acting up, and the few other poisonous bits I’m sure took quite the toll. However, do not be silent. Do not bite your tongue. Your words would be best used during a private conversation with ‘your prince’ about how this is leaving you feeling and how much you have to bite your tongue.

    That said, stepparenting, and stepmothering, is a whole new ball game. If his children are acting up, it’s important that he plays an important role, so that it doesn’t all fall on you… But you should be ‘allowed’ to parent and converse with the children as you see fit.

    The thing I see lacking is teamwork, I hope for you, that you are feeling better. Because your words about empty she’ll syndrome really resonated with me. During my husband’s custody battle (still ongoing) I have felt very silenced. Custody and all involved in it only credit and listen to and focus on the biological parents, which is completely disheartening… Because stepmothers (most) play a hugely important role.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Somehow found my way to this post – you’re doing an amazing job, Stepmomma. Whether you think you are or not, you are. Prince needs to understand that you guys are a team. But, if there’s one thing I’ve learned recently, it’s that you can’t change him – you can only let him see a change in yourself. If he doesn’t want help disciplining, then step back from it. Focus on yourself, and helping yourself get out of this rut you’re in. Let him deal with the kids, and when/if he comes to you for help – offer your take on it. But until that point, I would really just take a step back…for your own mental health, and your marriage.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. oh, i don’t want to change him. i just want him to see me more fully. he doesn’t want help in disciplining, but doesn’t do it himself- he gets too busy with projects or is exhausted from work. i wish it were easy to just ignore the issues, but i can’t just sit back and pretend nothing is happening. we go in waves. right now we are in a high. i’m also counting my days, as i know that they’re numbered with these boys. 14 will be moving on soon and i’ll probably ache wishing i had a teen to fight with ❤


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