The Biomom Perspective

I got my first ‘hate mail’ the other day. I say hate mail, it was really about as gentle a communication and truly heartfelt one as I could get, but we as stepmoms are usually defensive are we not?! She said she came to the page looking for insight and instead was crushed and could see why her young daughter was treating her so poorly after returning home from her dad / live-in girlfriend’s house. She felt we were bashing on biomoms and stepping over our boundaries and that she was being treated poorly by her daughter probably because a woman like us was trying to take her place. She said she was completely taken aback at how we could call ourselves mothers having never given birth. She had no idea that some of us were raising children full time in PLACE of biomoms who had walked away from their children. In fact it was clear it was unfathomable to her that a mother would be univolved at all and even more shockingly, that mothers would leave their kids for addiction or mental health issues and that was an entirely different angle for her to see this from. Instead of being angry or rude, I encouraged her to elaborate. I TRULY DO want to grow as a stepparent and when I say all feedback is welcome, that’s not just a pretty facade I put on for the readers, I really mean it.

Her response was not only honest, it was incredibly helpful. I wanted to share it with all stepmothers so you can see a different perspective. Not EVERYTHING about the biomom is bad, I don’t care what your situation is. We are taught as young children to find the good in everyone and yet we get so caught up in our own situation we don’t stop to think about the other person’s side of things.

I bring this to you so you can see that while there are many vindictive biomom’s who are coming across as rude and controlling as can be, I’d venture to say that most of them simply are coming from their own experience and background, have their own feelings that are getting hurt, and may actually be trying to make this work too.

DISCLAIMER: Yes I know many biomoms are just that, they are MOM. They win in many cases hands down by playing that biology card and they don’t want you to take over as the mother of their children let alone be anywhere NEAR their children. Of course I know this. Please understand, I am not trying to sugarcoat, I am a childless stepmom too, coming from an extremely dirty situation. I know all the games, manipulation, parental alienation, and hell that a stepmom can go through, I’ve been on the receiving end with my husband many times. Even still, the biomom in our life has some valid feelings, concerns and points. We cannot grow if we do not acknowledge our own piece of the puzzle and contributions to the breakdown of this co-parenting partnership.

That being said, the best part of this is that you can RELATE to it, but it isn’t directed AT you. That is why I found this so helpful. When you’re in the midst of it, you cannot see the forest through the trees. It is true genuine words from someone who is trying their best to make it work and I am confident you can understand and/or relate to at least some of what she is saying. I hope this sheds even a sliver of light into the other side of being a childless stepmom.

Biomom: “I am trying my hardest to have open communication with my ex’s girlfriend, as this women does care for and watch my child on a regular basis while she’s at her Dad’s house. I’m desperately trying to find a balance that works for all of us, and trying as hard as I can, which at times is incredibly difficult, to make this work. To have open communication, to be able to CO-PARENT. It’s hard for me to truly value her opinion. To be blunt. 🙂

Although I listen, to it- as often as she dishes the suggestions she has on raising my daughter. I cannot seem to put my insecurities aside and truly care what she has to say. This is a women who on a regularly bases talks about me on social media sites, bashing me as a Mom. She is sweet as pie when I speak to her on the phone or via email.”

The Childless Stepmom’s Reaction: Are you ever like this? Be honest. Have you ever felt yourself so irritation with the other parent in your scenario that you never EVER view them with fresh eyes? From HER perspective, if this stepmother is nice to her face but shitty behind her back of COURSE she’d find it hard to trust her opinion. And the same is true vice versa isn’t it? I went through the same thing. Biomom was always nice TO ME, but went off on her Facebook about me, ‘behind my back’ or at least not to my face. Not only does this send mixed messages, it means the relationship can never be anything built on a solid foundation and therefore, living daily co-parenting is nearly impossible. Note she says she has insecurities. She didn’t hide that. Biomoms have them, and they are very real. If you were in their shoes, it would frighten you to have another woman moving into their child’s life. I don’t think this only applies to biomom’s who are ‘guilty’ or aren’t doing ‘their part’. If I were a biomom, I know I would harbor the same jealousy and insecurity.

Biomom: “I think it def would be a difficult situation to be in, and she is a do-er. She likes to be involved, even wants to be involved. She is everything I could ever ask for a “step mom” for my 5 year old daughter. She takes her to dance class on Wednesdays, she picks her up when her dad is working, paints my daughter’s nails, I truly believe that she loves my daughter.”

The Childless Stepmom’s Reaction: Notice the genuine nature of these words. She may be lacking by not SHARING this with the stepmom in her scenario (I never asked her if she ever told her what a great job she thought she was doing), but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t feel it. She acknowledges that she thinks being in her situation is hard and she seems thankful that this woman is good to her child.

Biomom: “Again, thankfully, we are lucky to have all mature adults while in the presence of my daughter. It’s when she isn’t around when it gets nasty. My ex has a difficult time speaking to me, as he says it brings up too many memories that he tries to block out. So for this reason, there is little to no communication between her bio parents, which to me is really sad. I think she feels she needs to fill that gap, because she and I do believe in open communication. And it’ll be good for a while, until something happens when it goes downhill, quickly. Either I’ll see something on the computer that she has said about me, or a text is taken in the wrong interpolation and I get upset feeling as though she is trying to control me. And all the communication is bitter. I’m trying to find a medium ground, where everyone is happy- and there are boundaries set in place to where everyone knows their roles. Although this woman is given free range in their home- she is yet only 25% of the say. I think it is genuinely in her nature to be the best at everything she does.”

The Childless Stepmom’s Reaction: They suffer from what most blended families suffer from: an inability to behave like adults while the child isn’t around, a heated debate at most turns. At LEAST she says they can be good in FRONT of the child which is sadly a far cry from where many parents are in this situation. But she is so blatantly clear and honest about what is happening with the communication breakdown. Is this you? What are you doing to better this? I tried often to have clear and good communication with biomom. She was often receptive when she felt she wasn’t being threatened or ganged up on. MOST people do respond that way. I love how she mentions boundaries.

WHY ARE THERE NO DAMN BOUNDARIES SET BETWEEN ADULTS CLEARLY IN OUR SITUATION?

That would have been incredibly helpful to me! We never sat down and said this is where I think you fit, this is where I wish to fit, etc. etc. Truth be told, I never initiated this myself either, but looking back I wonder how much of a difference it could have made. I don’t believe this will always work and our biomom changed the boundaries and where she wanted me to be and where she wanted herself to be almost weekly. But still, it couldn’t have hurt to try and draw clearer lines. And I think that’s what this biomom is trying to convey.

Biomom: “You are truly an amazing writer, and are definitely the kind of person who should be running a page such as this! You truly do care, and want the best for everybody and that is inspirational! I can only imagine what it’d be like to be in your shoes. I feel like if I were you, I’d be doing this same thing : ) I think it just caught me off guard, how another women could refer to herself as a Mom, when indeed no baby ever grew in them. But you have clearly shown yourself as someone I would want raising my child, if anything were to happen to me- as is the women my ex is with now! Although the insecure part of me, would never want my daughter to think she had another Mama other than me, the other part of me would never want my daughter to feel as though she had no Mama at all!”

The Childless Stepmom’s Reaction: She goes on to award me an astounding compliment which I do NOT take lightly and was very humbled and thrilled to receive. But more importantly, look at the compliment she awards the bonus mom: she has shown herself as someone she wants raising her child if something were to happen to her. She addresses her insecurities, but is at least honest about what’s really important to her daughter.

I believe (because sadly I’ve seen it myself) that there are mothers who couldn’t be further from earning that title. They act like they are good people but they are really just living for themselves. Who knows how this particular biomom actually interacts with the bonus mom and how the bonus mom would respond to this. Perhaps she tries to be calm and collected but they bicker so much it’s so hard to convey positive and encouraging dialogue.

I didn’t post this as a catch-all for everyone. I know some of you may never have interactions with biomom like this. But I wanted to show that while not all stepmothers are wicked, not all biomoms are insensitive flakes out to ruin your new position. I hope some of you can take these words as encouragement and maybe look to establish a safe place for communication within your relationship because let’s face it, we married the ex too whether we like it or not. This was very helpful to me to see things from a different perspective. A parent’s job is to protect their children at all costs. Take it from me, sometimes you wish you could interaction with a parent who truly cared enough to fight for the well-being of their child. In that respect, you should consider yourself blessed. Moms are moms forever, you should focus on establishing your place in the child’s life and building your relationship with biomom in whatever form is healthy for you. Be that none, a little, or whole-heartedly. But don’t shut off communication until you’ve examined yourself.

11 Issues That Childless Stepmoms Face

1. WE ARE INCREDIBLY INSECURE. AND WE WORRY. AND WORRY. AND WORRY SOME MORE. We don’t know what we’re doing, because we’ve never done it! Stop using that against us and start appreciating our flaws and realizing that is NOT a threat to you as a biological mother. We are not weak. We are not stupid. In fact, we bring to the table a toughness that many other women can only dream of because we HAVEN’T been broken down by the system. But when it comes to helping raise YOUR child, we are doing it because we want to and because we love the man you are no longer raising him with. It’s really that simple. If you accuse me of not knowing my place, you’d be 100% right. But I assure you challenging me, fighting me, and criticizing me won’t teach it to me. It will however put you in YOUR place rather quickly.

2. We have NO clue about the court / friend of the court system and therefore take on worry over these issues twice as hard as stepmothers who’ve been there. We’ve never seen anything like this before and we quickly learned we didn’t want anything to do with it after it was too late! But don’t act like we’re having fun with it. It’s just as awful for us if not worse; we aren’t seasoned veterans like other stepmoms.
3. We didn’t have to let our OWN children adjust to anyone else, so we don’t know the first thing about the adjustment process. Guide us, don’t put us down because we’re doing it WRONG. To us there is no wrong way, we don’t know ANY way. We aren’t trying to step on toes, we just don’t know. Most of us are cautious about the transition, but we can’t possibly know everything the child is feeling and you projecting the way YOU feel on them isn’t helping.
4. We are in a state of confusion between babysitter and mother. We can care for a child as most women can, but without our own experiences, we are just like a babysitter not a mother. We are often seeking mother status/ or avoiding it for some of us, but the child is viewing us as one or BOTH…a very STRANGE position to be in. They know we aren’t a MOTHER so the pressure is on. But in my case, my child views me as his mother….but I’m not a child-bearing mother…so…wait…oh God…what am I ?!!!! See the trouble in this?
5. We don’t understand divorce with our own children, having not gone through it personally. If you want us to work with you, help us understand the boundaries, POLITELY. If you are concerned about something, TELL US, don’t talk shit about us behind our backs. NO we DON’T know what your children are going through from a MOTHER standpoint, but we WANT to, and we will work to do all we can to make it better for them. Don’t shut us out and suggest we ‘just don’t understand’. No shit we don’t understand! HELP us understand!
6. Our hopes are incredibly high, please don’t look down on us or crush our dreams, we truly have no idea what we’re dealing with! We haven’t been through the traumatic broken home with our own kids like other stepmothers, so we often show up with a gleam in our eye. Be patient with us, we don’t mean to be irrational, this comes from a genuine place in our hearts.
7. Depending on what age we came into the child’s life, we have no concept of this ‘biological bond’ and aren’t too focused on attaining it. We are in a constant state of guilt and confusion as we believe we are SUPPOSED to feel it, but we may not. We didn’t breast feed any babies. We didn’t get up for cries or diaper changes. Be gentle, it’s hard on us not to know how we feel about the child or to be able to truly pinpoint our connection. We know we truly love them and want what’s best for them THE SAME AS YOU DO. Keep that in mind the next time you accuse us of trying to ‘be their mom’. We don’t even know what that looks like, we’re just doing our best.
8. In general, we get hit with the worst stereotype (trying to take over or being biomom’s worst nightmare) because we try so hard and fight alongside our husbands, often pissing biomom off. We usually aren’t out to get you, we just don’t always understand the system. But we love our husbands and we love the child so we fight, ALL IN with them, because we have nothing to gauge our intensity or efforts off of (IE: our OWN friend of the court case, child support, etc.) We don’t come into this lightly usually, so we may be a little over the top, it’s not a personal attack. Many childless stepmothers, like myself, are well educated and entrenched in a career. I’ve never had to share my life with anyone else like this, let alone a child. I only know one mode: ALL IN. I knew nothing of the court system when I came into this relationship; it took me a long time to get to where you already are.
9. We know nothing about child support. And we don’t care. All we know is it’s a backwards system, bashed by both parties all the time. We don’t want your money if it’s coming from a bad place in your heart and you don’t truly want to help pay expenses for the child. If YOU are ordered to pay child support, whether or not you actually do, most likely we want nothing to do with it. And adversely, we don’t want to see our husbands work their asses off to pay the child support when the child comes home with ratty clothes and bad hygiene asking for food, needing a bath, etc. ALSO at least in MY state, MY income has nothing to do with YOUR child support and I was already established before I came into this (see #7). MORE THAN ENOUGH of my income goes toward raising your child, you’d be wise not to bring up MY INCOME in the context of child support.
10. Single parents have a tough time dating, unless of course they are dating other single parents. Even then it’s not easy, but it is much easier than hunting a partner who doesn’t WANT to take on your kids. Single childless women? We’re free. F-R-E-E to do whatever we want, whenever we want. We gave up a hell of a lot to help raise your child. If WE aren’t being snooty bitches to you, I’d suggest you check your attitude at the door.

11. Last but not least, we are moms by CHOICE, we are moms by filling a position, but otherwise we are NOT moms. Keep this in mind when you wonder why we behave in certain ways. We offer an entirely DIFFERENT perspective than that of our husbands, their ex-wives, or the in-laws. Appreciate that perspective, don’t belittle it.

I know these aren’t causes for hard feelings in EVERY situation and some biomoms and stepmoms work VERY hard to maintain a good relationship, which I can appreciate. But if that is not the case, at least take a moment to honestly assess where, if anywhere you may fall into this, biomoms and stepmoms alike.

Facebook FAIL!

Admit it. At one time or another (perhaps every single day) you’ve used your facebook as an outlet to get to biomom. You’ve set your stuff to public in hopes that she’ll see it. She has done the same exact thing. She posts things about the kids or more likely, about YOU knowing you’ll see it. She’s trying to hurt you, belittle you, or just play the bitch card because it’s easy.

Facebook is the easiest most passive/aggressive way to get at someone. If you choose to use your facebook for this type of activity you are most likely going to acquire or become a ‘stalker’ at one point or another. It’s an obsession. You check it daily. You go back and forth calling each other out so that you both can see what the other has written, but it’s not to each other’s faces.

How effective is this?

Well, I myself was like you. She was (insert a word that means exercising poor judgement) enough to leave her facebook open for people to see what was going on, posting all kinds of craziness because it was HERS and she could do what she WANTED with it, so we were told.  Of COURSE it’s incredibly easy to navigate your way around this social networking utility if you know even the slightest bit about privacy settings. Even if you THINK your actions are private, they’re not. I myself work in the technology field. It is our JOB to know and understand social media and more importantly, security. I’m no computer forensic scientist, but I can find out anything, quickly, easily, and legally, if I need to, just as you can. And I did.

My boy came home on more than one occassion saying things that couldn’t be ignored about his time at biomom’s house. She denied the activity, so I did what any concerned stepparent would do. I went facebooking! All jokes aside these were serious concerns but they are our business and hers, they aren’t things that need to be aired on the internet (lesson #1 which I will get to later). My husband and I found several things that confirmed our fears, later moving to a motion in court. YES this does happen but NO facebook alone will not help you in court so if you are even considering counting on it you’re wasting your time.

As soon as she knew we were looking at it, it was ON. She posted trash about us CONSTANTLY. MEAN and TWISTED comments. Vindictive things. Pictures of her biological child and her, with long strings of trash about us and all we’d done to him and to her. She sought attention and sympathy, and from her crew, she always got it. She used this to communicate with us her inner most hatred. And it worked. Because we looked. And we were upset. And me specifically? I was hurt. I was insecure. Was she right?

Until one day she took it too far. She wrote a LONG and involved ‘note’ on facebook about all the horrid things we’d done and the past of my husband. The facts however of said note were false. Ever taken a law class or even a marketing 101 course? When you write something false about another it isn’t just frowned upon, it’s against the law. It leads to defamation of character and is punishable and a case that is actually quite easily won. Especially in this case since we did not provoke it or retaliate. This is called Libel. A libel is a malicious, false statement in written media, a broadcast, or otherwise published words.

I was livid. How dare she speak so poorly of us and how dare she spread lies about my husband’s legal past? I contacted our attorney. A cease and desist notice was drafted and placed on her. She was much more careful after that.

Can you see how far this goes? But let’s get to the root of the issue:

HOW INSANELY CHILDISH IS THIS LADIES?!!!

Come on! You’re woman enough to pay your own bills, raise a child YOU DID NOT create and hold down a home, and a husband. But you can’t keep your mouth shut on facebook?? Yes YOU! I’m addressing us stepmoms, not biomoms! We have a responsibility to fight twice as hard as them and be twice as righteous! You may think that sounds absurd but the truth is the truth. They have it much easier. THEY ARE MOM. Plain and simple. Any biological race, they will win. Always. We have to prove ourselves. How are you faring? Are you giving into this crap too?

I have to admit I cringe when I read some of the trash posted about step and biomoms alike on these facebook pages by my fellow mombloggers. Really? REALLY? That is how you want to be remembered? That’s the vision you want your stepkids to have of you? The HORRENDOUS things you are saying about their mother?

Now, follow me. I have had a LOT of issues with the biomom in our case.  I don’t live in a jolly situation where I’ve had no trouble. Believe me. You can dish out all your stories and tell me I don’t have any experience to draw from if you knew half of my story, you’d be amazed I’ve chosen to keep my mouth shut. I have all the right in the world to jump on her jokester FB train and play along. I’ve simply chosen to live better than those using their friggen FACEBOOK to communicate instead of picking up the damn phone. And I was in the same boat as you, perhaps on many levels, a more rickety boat. I didn’t WANT to keep my mouth shut either. Why should I?! She deserved it! A lot of times, let’s face it, the women receiving your anger deserve those nasty words. Who do they think they are? Talking to us like that. Using THEIR facebook first, come on that’s why we retaliate! How dare they!

Wait? Did I just say they started it? Because we are in elementary school?

I don’t mean to make fun. I’ve been there too many times. I have felt that hatred and I’ve been betrayed by a woman who speaks kindly to my face and ill of me elsewhere. You have every right to be angry, just as I did. But who wins when you play this game with her? You’re not winning. And your short-lived facebook digs die out as quickly as your character with each new mud-slinging post. Again, I’ve been there, and I KNOW what you feel. I HAVE done what you’ve done. I am no better and I’ve behaved in ways I’m ashamed of or wished I could take back. But the proof is in MY actions and it’s in the MOUNTAIN of court paperwork and documentation sitting in my home office. I don’t have to talk shit about her to know who I AM or what MY relationship is like with my son. He will know the truth based upon MANY factors. And she won’t ever have a single nasty FACEBOOK STATUS of mine to use against me. She cannot say the same for her behavior and online etiquette. I didn’t need these things to prove myself to my child. And you don’t either.

It’s so hard to break this cycle. It really is. It becomes almost something to look forward to! Log in, poke around, and BAM! There she is. Saying something awful about you, or better yet, YOU posted some trash and are waiting for HER passive/aggressive underhanded backwards response! It’s seriously some sh*t you can set your clocks to. You KNOW it’s coming. It WILL happen. And you thrive off it. “Who’s the better mom?? HOW DARE SHE! Who’s gets the last laugh? Oh it will be me. Can you believe she said that?! Who does she think she is. I will show her. Oh yeah? Well I’M raising him/her and I HAVE YOUR HUSBAND and blah blah blah blah……”

{blah}

Facebook was so much a part of my life it was brought up in family  AND individual therapy sessions 🙂 That is no lie. And I’d be told repeatedly to stop looking at it. Every time you look she wins. Every time she posts something and you get upset by it that’s EXACTLY what she wants. But I wouldn’t listen. I’d keep looking. She’d keep posting. Until one day I’d really had enough.

Why am I doing this? What do I gain from this? Do I really want to be a part of this game? Will I ever win?  And that’s when I cut the cord so to speak. Not only did I stop communication with her DIRECTLY, I stopped communication with her INDIRECTLY. If she had something to say to us, she has all of our contact information and she can contact us, DIRECTLY, like adults if needed. And the facebook funsies died there that day. I don’t need to worry about what her facebook says, I worry about what is happening in my OWN home. She is not a part of that.

You’ll get to a point where you don’t care what she posts, because even if she is posting about you EVERY SINGLE DAY, it falls on worthless eyes if you aren’t reading it. Sure her FRIENDS might see it. So? She may post with her pals to talk about how TERRIBLE you are. Who cares? Of course her buds side with her. And YOUR buds side with you. That’s life. Why does it matter what she says about you? If you feel you all function better without any communication, so be it. DROP the facebook BS. Also understand that there will come a day where all her lies are called out even by her own buddies. She can post all she wants about all the things that are happening but sooner or later one of her outspoken pals will start doing the math and call her out….even if gently. LIES DON’T SURVIVE. Even on facebook with your OWN friends 🙂

If you actually HAVE to have communication, or better yet you WANT communication, take the first step. Stop posting about her at ALL. Don’t look at her facebook and do not post about her. You’re better than that aren’t you? I look at it like this: if you two are BOTH involved in this trash talking, you’re equally guilty, I don’t care who is TRULY ‘better’ than the other by whatever standards you’re judging yourselves from. IF YOU STOP AND SHE CONTINUES, how TRULY childish is she??! LOL That’s actually hilarious! If you don’t bother her or give her any reason to trash talk you, you don’t interupt her lifestyle or say ANYTHING negative about her. But yet she continues? She is simply the ultimate in immature women and you don’t have time to associate with that ANYWAY, do you?

THAT IS WHERE YOU WIN. Don’t look at her facebook. Don’t talk trash. Don’t worry about what she’s doing. And you win 🙂 You will find you don’t even become CURIOUS because who the hell cares what she is up to NOW?! Some new nonsense that means nothing to you and your life. YOU’RE raising a child who loves you. Her FACEBOOK POSTS??  W-O-R-T-H-L-E-S-S. Don’t even look. You’ll be AMAZED the transformation that takes place in your heart and home. SHE doesn’t live with you. Stop inviting her in by worrying about her FACEBOOK for God’s sake! BLOCK HER. I took this step long ago. And facebook has block requirements so you can’t block and unblock whenever you feel like it, there are rules surrounding it. BLOCK HER and that part of her will go away. You can’t concern yourself with what you can’t see ladies. Plus, she will sit and wonder what you’re actually seeing, but all the while, YOU’VE blocked her?!  Don’t tell her you’ve blocked her, just don’t post crap or bitch at her about her comments. She won’t know if you saw her childish trash or not. It will drive her nuts. Let her stew in that. You’re busy caring for your family while she’s talking sh*t on Facebook.

There are two important things that I finally understood. First, watch what you put on the internet. There’s a very good possibility the biomom in my life is reading this exact blog or has found a way into portions of MY Facebook. Absolutely, no doubt about it. If I can do it, she can do it, just as anyone else can. The difference between her and I? She will never find an unkind word, libelous statement, or nasty bashing of any type from any of my social network outlets. Because I have so much self control and am perfect in my position? LOL Of course not. Because I am above it, and that is all. We should all behave as though we are above this. The second important thing that I realized is that ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN YOUR FACEBOOK STATUS. She said all kinds of things about the glorious mother that she was and the terrible things we did to ‘take her son away’. Except we have documentation and the trust of a boy who’s been cared for EVERY SINGLE DAY without falter. And she has………facebook statuses? When it comes to the truth there is no competition, there’s actions, and well….actions. Stop letting a FACEBOOK post ruin your family, if you continue to utilize it for foul play like that, you are doomed to fail.

So, I have developed the 5 ways to avoid facebook FAIL. Read and implement, you won’t be sorry 🙂

#1 : STOP AIRING YOUR BUSINESS ON THE INTERNET. Seriously, everyone who engages in this looks like a complete ass, if you are in this category, KNOCK IT OFF. It looks ABSURD and you are no better than anyone else. It’s one thing to be upset, it’s another to tell the PUBLIC how Jerry Springer things are around your house. You look far from stable and it’s obnoxious. There are many people who LOVE these stories. They are NOT conducive to a healthy blended family, THAT I already know. Take my advice, keep it to yourself. And I don’t care if biomom is a ‘whiny, drunken, crack-whore using every dime of child support to feed her fat ass and buy drugs’ (yes I actually saw that this week, it’s no one’s business and you are stooping LOWER than low by saying that crap. You don’t have to censor every word you post, but it wouldn’t kill you to be a little more cautious, this is just dangerous and you NEVER know who’s looking at it. You may say you don’t care. But you will.

#2 : NEVER INTERRUPT YOUR ENEMY WHEN THEY’RE MAKING A MISTAKE. So biomom is going full throttle in her facebook trash talking but you are doing NOTHING of the sort, NOTHING can be used against you in the written word and you’re not ‘stalking’ her or trying to get involved in her affairs. Perfect. That’s exactly where it should be. Because she will have to pay for that trash talking. Remember how I said facebook alone will not help you in court? That’s true, using it ALONE won’t. But proving character concerns and parental alienation do come fairly easily from this particular social media network. She wants to talk? Let her talk. You keep your mouth shut as best you can. HIGH. ROAD. ALWAYS.

#3: STOP TAKING THE BAIT. When she has reason to believe you’re not looking at her facebook, she will stop posting on it. That’s like human nature in it’s most primitive form. Don’t your kids do this? They want your attention and act poorly but when you ignore them, they learn to stop. The more you gripe about her, the more she thinks (KNOWS) you’re doing the same damn thing on the other end. Have enough self control to block her and stop letting her bait you. Refuse the bait or you belong to her. Hook. Line. And sinker.

#4: TRY SURROUNDING YOURSELF WITH THOSE THAT WILL ENCOURAGE YOU TO STAY OUT OF HER LIFE.  We get wrapped up in listening to those that want to ‘help our cause’ don’t we? We know the ‘right’ friends are the ones who tell us to take the high road, but they’re no fun when biomom is in battlemode with her internet machine, right? So we boot them and enlist the ones who matter. The ‘GET HER’ s! The GET HERs are the ones who stand behind every blasting BS post we deal with. THEY begin seeking her out too sometimes! OMG did you SEE what she posted about you today???!  This is a nightmare and I’m actually sad I’m even addressing it. This is dumb ladies. End this trash. Get your friends on board who say when you’re being dumb and tell you not to listen to her OR retaliate. They are better for you. You don’t HAVE to keep your opinion to yourself, but you should be choosy who you share it with. Call your girlfriends. Meet for dinner dates with them and vent like that. Don’t take it to facebook. My fellow mombloggers and fb page admins will fight me on this. It’s YOUR page you say. You NEED to vent. Of course you do. And I am no different. I’ve just chosen to make these outlets about my personal growth in constructive ways. I KNOW biomom’s faults already. It doesn’t help me grow to point them out. It helps me grow to examine ME as a stepmother and wife. Her activities don’t play a role in who I AM. I believe this trash talking is petty and won’t help you. Sure the cute little digs are fun here and there, but that’s for private. Not where it’s available for her to see.

#5 : LEARN AND CORRECTLY IMPLEMENT THE PRIVACY SETTINGS.  You know damn well you leave it set to public so you can sting her with every post. Why? Try living your life and letting her live her own. She wins every time you post about the AMAZING DAY YOU HAD AT THE ZOO WITH LITTLE JOHNNY. Why does she always have to know what you’re doing? Why do you always have to know what she’s doing? If there truly is a parenting issue that you are using facebook to find it WILL come out. And facebook is only one small piece of the puzzle. I’ve found it’s far more often being used to attack one another. Which is just dumb. How many times have you said, “I looked at her facebook and….”? And? who cares what is on her facebook. What is she doing for her CHILD in REAL LIFE? What are you doing to promote a healthy relationship and lifestyle? It’s momentarily fun to bash on facebook, YES. But from a court’s perspective, this looks AWFUL. You want to explain to the judge why you said such AWFUL things about her? Or would you rather she had to?

Thought so.

You may be thinking to yourself that this is not ‘low’ because it’s nothing you wouldn’t say to her face. To that, I’d have to agree with you. I don’t type a single word on a public forum that I wouldn’t want biomom to see, nor would I not stand behind. I am strong in my opinions and have every right to speak with conviction about the boy I am raising in her absence because of her choices. <  —— But it ends there. The world doesn’t need to know specifics about our situation or what she is or is not. And while there’s nothing you maybe wouldn’t say to her face, would you say that to the children? I don’t know about you, but my son can read. And he can read well. You think they can’t see what you’re writing? More importantly, do you not care? In that case, there may be no hope for you. Because my child will know the truth, in it’s appropriate time and medium and he will never have a trace of me trash talking her. Because I’m better than that and so are you.

How Damaging Is An Immature Woman To A Child?

How many of you immediately expected this blog to be about an immature biomom based on its title? I can’t blame you, at one time in my life my attention was almost entirely devoted to issues with the biomom in our situation. I imagine you at your computer (or phone, or ipad etc), and you are probably fuming. She’s done it again, something new, something stupid and you’re angry and searching for someone to speak poorly of her with, someone who feels your pain. I was like you. For far longer than I even care to admit.
That all changed about a year and a half ago. She had pulled the final straw….she was publicly bashing us on the internet. A string of falsities dancing across her public page. I had HAD it. I mean HAD it. Something had to change. She had ‘made her own bed’ so to speak and I was tired of feeding into the drama. She was where she was by her own doing and that day it became incredibly obvious to me what MY part in this ongoing fight would be.
I would have none.
I would wish her well, FORGIVE HER (yes I said that) and I would walk away. I would release myself from the chains associated with this ongoing back and forth and I would let her walk her talk. She had so much to say. She was so determined we were out to get her and make things difficult for her, so that day my husband and I released, and let her show just what she truly was. If there is no one fighting you, or putting up constant roadblocks, you have no one to blame but yourself for the outcome, right? Right. And that was my stance. I was finally at a point where I was done trying to stop ANYTHING, if she wanted something done she’d have to do it herself, and she’d do it WITHOUT my intervention. I literally let go and didn’t take a SINGLE cheap shot or try and impede anything she chose to do. I was not going to stand in her way. I removed myself (and my husband) from anything that could cause a single hold-up for her. I wanted to see how strong all those words were.
That day, I found the following quote:
After I read this, it was like a thousand pounds was lifted from me. I decided to respond to her online bashing with a well thought out response, one that would eventually be the last communication I’d have with her. I signed it with the quote above. And that day my husband and I vowed not to interfere with her life or her choices again. We were in a position (by the grace of God) to let her do as she pleased, because our child was safe regardless of her actions. Despite what you may believe, aside from detrimental immediate harm to your child where you’re FORCED to get involved, you are also in a position to do this, in some way.
Ever since that day, things have never been the same. This was the day I started becoming ‘mature’ in my circumstance. I started living for me and my family and not for what the courts would do. I literally gave this to God and trusted that He would do the right thing. Since then, though not always on ‘my’ time or how ‘I’ would plan it, He has done just that.
Many of us are ‘mature’ adults by societal definition, all things considered. We hold down jobs, we feed our kids, we pay our bills, we keep our promises and fulfill our obligations. But that is really the definition of responsible, not mature. Webster’s defines mature as ‘pertaining to or characteristic of full development’. Now, with regards to that definition, myself, and probably most of you are not MATURE in our positions as stepmoms because we are NOT fully developed. But I believe there is a path to becoming fully developed, and one must start somewhere.
We are so busy fighting a battle that we actually have no control over, that we miss the fact that there is beauty in letting go and letting others make their choices. I have literally been HANDS OFF and MOUTH CLOSED for a LONG time now. And things have gone as she chose. The beauty in that is that she can never say her circumstances are anything other than what she made them. We have not badmouthed nor intervened in ANY way despite the hundreds of opportunities to do so.
We go to sleep at night knowing we are raising the child as best we can, with the utmost integrity. Actions speak louder than words. And people can say all they wish to say. But myself, my husband and MOST of all my stepson know the truth. He knows all safe and healthy options are available to him and he can choose as he wishes. And she has plenty of doors open to her should she choose to make the right choice.
The point is that nothing is more pure and true than allowing someone to live their life without any roadblocks and see what they choose when your influence is taken away. Stop bashing biomom. We’ve all seen it. We’ve all felt it. At one point or another we’ve seen exactly what is happening in your life (or some equally damning variation). Your job is to teach your children right from wrong and to keep them safe. After that, it’s to allow them to form their own opinions within those safe boundaries. Stop making yourself an excuse. When you bash her, you make yourself an excuse for her behavior. “Well they make it impossible”, “they don’t tell the truth”, “they don’t involve me so I can’t be all that I should be”….”they”, “they”, “they”. Don’t feed into that. Step OUT of it, and let her live as she chooses. It’s best for everyone. Then if she chooses to do the right thing, it’s 100% genuine and not the result of any petty fighting or competition. Adversely, if she DOESN’T choose to do the right thing, you AND the child(ren) will know, beyond a SHADOW of a doubt that it was not your doing and you had no influence on it.
I believe all children need this. They deserve to have a home of neutrality as much as possible. Wouldn’t you agree? Wouldn’t you rather that they grew up surrounded by the HONEST truth and not someone’s VERSION of it? You can only provide an ACCURATE picture to them when your mouth is closed and you aren’t belittling the other parties in the situation. BELIEVE ME, I’ve been there. Sometimes, sadly, biomom is easy to bash because she plays the biology card and she ‘coasts’ on it. Sometimes these women literally haven’t done a new and productive thing since the birth of their children but they get to claim that they are the ‘real’ mom, so all else is lost.
But do you trust that your stepkids are intelligent enough to grasp that? While you scratch and claw and fight her, your stepkids never REALLY know the truth, they know two SPOKEN versions of it…..yours….and hers.

SPOKEN versions. Not LIVE TRUE versions. They deserve the live and true version. I’ve spoken to MANY adults that grew up in broken homes and there is one MASSIVE and EMOTION CHOKING theme……they already knew the truth. But the ones with stepmoms who bashed their biomom had a SIGNIFICANTLY lesser relationship than those who were raised in a home where the parents allowed for their own opinion to be formed.

Another constant theme was the theme of biomom and her fighting. Even when the stepmom backed off entirely and did not belittle her, she still spoke poorly of the new wife, creating a huge rift in the relationship she was trying so hard to ‘protect’. These biomoms spoke poorly of dad and stepmom and the kids reaction was an obvious, ‘wait a minute, they never speak poorly of you and never made me choose, someone’s lying.’ Someone indeed. But is it the one who fed their little ears trash just to make themselves look better or bring down the other parent, or the one who bit their tongue in hard situations and allowed for the child to find out on their own how things really were?
Exactly.
It is healthy to realize you are not yet mature in your situation, and if you’re still bashing biomom, you’re not yet mature, plain and simple. And that is NOT a shot against anyone, I’ve been there myself, but if you’re not on the road to beginning, what’s stopping you? Let go of the control you think you have, trust me on this one. 3 years ago I never saw myself feeling the way I feel today. Anger and frustration about this whole custody nonsense had consumed me. But look at this from a different angle, realizing you have no control ironically allows you the most control. If I’ve learned anything it’s that my stepson wants a place to come home to that ensures his safety and keeps tight boundaries so he can learn and grow. But most importantly,  he doesn’t want to be ‘different’ and he doesn’t want to be part of a game. He wants to be him. He wants to have his own opinion (and he has PLENTY!), but most importantly he doesn’t want anyone to sway his opinion or EVER tell him his opinion is wrong. Again, unless it’s detrimental to his health and well being, it’s not your job to step in and teach him how to think. Your job is to teach him how to think ON HIS OWN, you do that by guiding him without imposing your views. He is and will ALWAYS be half of her, and I refuse to utter a word that would EVER make him think half of him is broken. You’d be wise to do the same, even if she truly is ‘broken’. For my little guy, he already knows the truth because we chose to allow him to find it without imposing our opinions. This ‘truth’ will grow and change as he does. He is comfortable in his current circumstance. He knows the lines are open should he choose to use them and right now he is confident that he is loved BY ALL and is special.
My best advice to any stepmom stewing in her anger, jealousy, and other blended family issues, find a way to let it go. By holding onto it you’re doing more harm than good. Children deserve to know all their parents, even if that means knowing them from a distance in their young years and getting to know them later in life when they’re old enough to understand all of what’s happening. There are legitimate cases where biomom is not involved but that shouldn’t suggest you should bash her in her absence. For now, your job is to guide them with a neutral hand. Remember the old saying, if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all? LIVE IT. Compliment her parenting in the places you can and defend her if there are inaccuracies. If there is a place to take a shot, leave it, don’t touch it, your kids ALREADY KNOW. Your children will trust you for being 100% real without being 100% dirty.

To this day we live without getting involved in her affairs and it’s done wonders for everyone. Despite how awful you may think she is, she is just living her life too and perhaps she could ease up if you make the first move. If she is truly a mean and nasty soul out to wreck all your happiness, so be it.  It’s possible she will always battle even if you don’t. However, she will always fight harder when you’re fighting too. You might be surprised as to what other things have her attention. Pull out of the race so to speak, we have, and things are much more peaceful. If you stop making waves, you’ll find most likely she is slinging mud at least PARTIALLY because you are too, she’d look awfully foolish to be slinging alone wouldn’t she?

It’s simply a power struggle. You want all the power? Relinquish it. If she is on the path to maturing she too will relinquish it. If not, you can and WILL mature without her consent or action. And the child(ren) in your home learn a VALUABLE lesson when you allow them to see the truth without your input. Don’t believe me? Just try it. Take the weight off your shoulders just for a day, for an hour. That gut wrenching feeling you’ve been carrying around? It will melt away. That is the beginning of maturing in your circumstance. ALL the kids we’re raising, deserve a mature stepmother. It is within your reach, but you have to drop all the other crap to grab it.

win