I told you recently I sometimes check to see what keywords bring people to my blog. Always interesting, but recently a certain set of search words really set me off
At first I didn’t understand – it read like an oxymoron to me. How can you be childless AND be a stepmom? And then it hit me … Ohhh. Childless as in “I don’t have my OWN kid”. It hit like a locomotive – a locomotive full of poop.
So then I did my own search. I keyed in childless stepmom and childless stepmother into my google and what do you know? It’s pretty common. There are chat rooms and books and message boards and blogs and articles and entire websites dedicated to this topic. Some of them were using the label simply as a designation – a way to identify a circumstance or choice. Others – most in fact – used it as a lament. And man oh man did that stick in my craw.
Now I know I’m dangerously close to sounding un-empathetic here … not to mention dangerously close to being named the A-numero-uno hypocrite since I’ve posted my own struggles with being a stepmom here and here. But honestly, the whole thing just frosted me.
I just think it is such a perfect example of how your perspective can have a major impact on your attitude.
I have no child of my own
And I have to parent this child that isn’t mine
See how terrible my life is?
If it weren’t for this man
And the child he brought into this world
I wouldn’t have the joy of parenting at all
And maybe because I technically fall into this category I feel okay being somewhat bitchy. So here are a few things I would like to say to childless stepmoms.
- In most cases you knew what we were getting into – most men don’t lean over on the wedding day and say, oh hey, by the way, I have a kid – or three.
- While being a stepmom presents unique challenges, you do have the opportunity to share in the crazy wonders of raising a kid – there are oceans of women who never will get to do this in any capacity – ever.
- I understand you are hoping that the “childless” part of your label changes, but maybe you really should consider not ever having children with your husband. It could be that’s the best thing for his current child(ren).
- To follow that up – when you get into a marriage with a man who has children you no longer get to be your number one concern. There is a whole human being that needs you to be the bigger person and think about what’s best for them, not what you want.
- You aren't childless. So knock it off.
I just can’t ever imagine labeling myself as a childless anything. Especially since I cannot imagine ever looking into that Kid’s eyes and saying, You’re my step-daughter, but you don’t count. I am childless.
You couldn’t pay me enough to do such a thing.