EVIL STEPMOM AND FAIRY GODMOTHER: YING AND YANG OF PARENTING/STEP PARENTING

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Yes we all know the story: evil step mom does her best to foil the success of her beautiful stepdaughter, pushing her own daughters ahead. We all know the story and yes, there is another star-studded movie version in theatres this weekend.

Then the fairy godmother swoops in, rescues the beautiful Cinderella and saves the day with her kindness and excellentvstyling capabilities.

As a stepmom and occasional fairy godmother, in all honesty the real step mom, (there are lots of us out there), are both Fairy Godmother and Evil Stepmother combined. We are ying and yang. We like every person have both dark and light aspects of our emotions.

If each of us stepmoms is truly honest with ourselves, there are moments when we feel jealousy, pettiness and a tinge of anger towards our step kids. Our stepkids smell differently than our own do, there are times when we can’t and should not discipline them. And yes, moments when our partner pays more attention, or supports the stepchild over, and that burns! And yes, we would like to and hopefully don’t act out on our anger and jealousy.

The best action we can take is to speak of our jealousy and anger to our partner, own it and have compassion for our feelings. When have the courage to speak our truth, and our partner understands and helps us through our shame and hurt, we can heal and do better next time.

And, like me, most of you stepmoms out there have had your fairy godmother moments too. You have dropped everything and helped your stepdaughter dress for prom. You have moved mountains to help her get what she needed for her school work, her camp, her summer job, her physical wellbeing.

Yes, we stepmoms are curious, complex creatures with petty, jealous and deep love for our stepchildren. In the end the loving stepfamily can support, grow and develop secure, safe and caring kids. It takes a team, a compassionate and secure partnership.