Advice for step mums: handling step children
Adapting to your role as step mother
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Adapting to your role as step mother

Children have an astonishing ability to adapt, provided that you respect some basic principles. Don't show up in their life playing the role of the perfect, radiant step mum who dreamt about being a part of their life, even before she met their dad.

Firstly, you don't (yet) know how things are going to work out. And secondly, you could create a suffocating environment by trying to be the dream step mum but actually coming across as fake.

For your partner's children, there is considerable change taking place in the family unit and in its future. Your initial steps are therefore crucial. Unfortunately, there's no magic formula: you're going to do a lot of fumbling, hesitating, doubting yourself and playing guessing games. Your step children will push you to your limits and most likely give you a really hard time.

Dominique Devedeux warns: "Don't forget that in the eyes of step children, step mothers are rarely seen as 'cool'... They're often seen as the person who has stolen their dad, who has invaded their life and their family. Be careful, there will be booby traps everywhere, because despite their angelic faces, they're still capable of unsettling their step mum!"

Parenting Editor
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