Shaken, Not Stirred

I have been thinking a lot lately about the Tribe.  I have been thinking about how far we have all come and where we have been.  We are what people like to call a “blended family.”  And I am considered a “childless stepmom.”  I don’t like these terms at all.  (Be warned, I am feeling soap boxy today.)

First, the idea of a “blended family” to me implies that you just kind of throw everyone together and stir things until they are combined.  It does not mention any of the work involved or the love that we feel.  It just says that we are thrown together.  For us, (I hope, for us and not just me…) being The Tribe is about all of us working together.  It is about being a family and learning how we each work and look at the world.  Its about spending time together and growing together.  It is not only about my relationship with Bear.

Second, I don’t think someone can be a “childless stepmom.”  Stepmom means that there are children involved.  Whether or not they call you mom is irrelevant.  You are an adult in their lives and you should be a stepmom to them.  If you can’t be, then you shouldn’t have married a man with kids.  If others are making it hard for you, it is something that you have to deal with.  If their father doesn’t want you involved with them, you shouldn’t have married him because he wasn’t ready.

I know that there are a lot of people out there that see this differently.  But, I think it is important for my girls to know where I stand in all of this. After all, is our family that is involved.  And I feel like we are shaken, and not blended.  The Tribe has always and will always do things our own way.

5 Responses to “Shaken, Not Stirred”

  1. Megan Regnerus

    I agree whole-heartedly…My husband (who didn’t bring children of his own to the marriage) took on helping me raise my three sons a few years ago, and no matter what the boys call him, he is in a parenting role with them. We are a family; the boys are his stepsons. There is gravity and realness in that not conveyed in the labels”blended family” or “childless step parent.” Hats off to step parents everywhere, and the many tasks they take on regardless of implied disrespect via the labels we use.

  2. Sprite's Keeper

    Since I was never raised in a step family environment, I honestly don’t know how to react to the labels. As long as the girls and you agree that you’re a mom to them, then you’re a mom. Biology doesn’t mean much when it comes to love. You aren’t required to love your girls. You love them because you do.

  3. Jamie

    Amen! I couldn’t agree more!!

  4. Maureen at IslandRoar

    I think this is right on. My kids are grown, but anyone who chooses to have me in their life also chooses to be involved with my kids.

    The girls are so lucky to have you!

  5. Casey

    Soap box away, labels suck. My dad raised my brothers and I from the time I was one and he’s not my biological dad. He’s the one who walked me down the aisle and who was there for me (and still is).

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