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Stepmom Help On Communicating With Your Husband About The Stepchildren

Written by Stepmom Life Coach Jessica Phifer-Patterson

As a stepmom for ten years who has experienced various types of custody arrangements such as weekends, 50/50, and full-time, I know how incredibly trying and difficult it can be to navigate stepmomhood while maintaining a positive and healthy relationship with your husband.

I learned through many difficult times that communicating is extremely important when it comes to co-parenting and taking care of the stepkids.

Experts widely agree that effective communication is crucial for successful co-parenting and step-parenting.

I’ve recently spoken to many different stepmoms with various types of custody situations, and their number one issue is communicating with their spouse about the kids. Whether it's addressing the kids' behavior when the husband isn't there or discussing the shared responsibilities, many feel they are doing more than their husband for the kids. Trust me, I have been there and felt this more than a few times

I think back to when my husband and I started dating. He was a single full-time dad of a 14-year-old who had him wrapped around her finger. She would ask him to jump, and he would reply with, 'How high?' It could be any time of the day or night—if she wanted something or his attention, she got it immediately. I don't blame either of them; he was trying his best to give her the best life he could. However, I saw some very unhealthy signs and felt I should say something to him. Having that difficult conversation about my perspective and how I perceived the child's behavior was extremely uncomfortable and tough.

After many times witnessing the entitled and disruptive behavior, I decided to go forth and have the conversation I felt we desperately needed to have.

I can say I am so happy we had that conversation early on before things got completely out of control. He took the conversation very well, and we started to come up with ideas on how we could improve the behavior and his immediate 'I'll do anything for you' response.

My point is, stepmoms out there, if something is bothering you, speak up. If you don't, resentment will build, and that is toxic.

Need help starting the conversation? Here are some ideas to help you prepare and have the conversation.

Prepare: If you are nervous or upset, the conversation will be erratic and all over the place. I suggest you bullet point the points you want to make. Include the negative ones, but also add in the positives. Sometimes, we focus so much on the negatives that they overshadow the positives in the situation.

Visualize the conversation going the way you ideally want it to go. Ask yourself, 'What is my body language saying? Are my arms crossed, or am I sitting/standing up tall and confident?' What's my tone in my voice? Imagine the conversation going exactly the way you want, with a solution and resolution as the end result.

Next, mention to your spouse that you have something you want to talk about privately and when full attention can be given. Try not to appear or sound mad, upset, or defensive.

Schedule the time. Having the conversation can be hard, but not having it can make your life much harder. Perhaps it will give you some confidence to do it.

Be honest and upfront about how you feel, and most of all, listen to what they have to say. There is no "you are right and I am wrong," or vice versa. Relationships are about compromise. So, try to understand each other's perspectives and feelings, and come up with an action plan or how you both will try to resolve the issue.

Resolution doesn't happen overnight, so don't expect everything to change and improve after one conversation. Continue to communicate and be open with each other, and watch the situation improve over time.

"Stepmom life is a beautiful journey with many bumps but also many smooth riding times."

If you are experiencing difficulties in your journey or need another fellow stepmom to lean on, please do not hesitate to book a call with me today. We will dive deep into your journey and come up with some ideas and plans to make your stepmom life journey a great one!

Book a free discovery call today! You deserve to be a happy and fulfilled stepmom.

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