For more than a year now, I have been speaking directly to step moms … trying to encourage and build up; share Scripture and insights; and hopefully helping them to see their blended family from different perspectives.
This is my heart and passion – to help women in their blended families – to help them with marriages that come with many different challenges.
Lately, though, I have been burdened by thoughts of that just reaching out to step moms isn’t enough. You are in integral part of this family – can make or break it – but there is a husband and then there are children involved.
Today, I’m speaking to stepdads. Are you listening? Because us step moms are struggling. We want to give ourselves completely to you. We are wired to give ourselves. We want to be your partner for life. We want to make your home a safe haven to rest in with comfort, peace and security. We want to love your children and help guide and mentor them. We want to be a part of daily life decisions – to be included in your life and heart. We want to know that we are a priority to you – which in return means that we will do the same for you.
I am aware of the heavy responsibility you carry to provide for your family and home. I am aware of the stress caused by having an ex wife and a current wife – having your kids, your current wife’s kids and maybe adding another one together.
I am aware that leaving for your job every day seems more like an escape for a moment of peace; to not be pulled from one problem to another. I am aware that your wife has been trying to talk to you about helping with discipline with the kids, helping with getting your kids to accept her, or asking you to make her feel like she is your wife, friend and lover instead of a maid, chauffeur, and chef.
Blended family dads, please come out of your shell and face these challenges with your wife. When you withdraw, you leave us confused. You leave us feeling unloved and unwanted. You leave us feeling we should divide the furniture and the kids and go our separate ways.
We need you to step up and be the leader in our home. The captain of our team. The ruler of our hearts. We will follow you but you need to move in order for us to follow. Sitting behind a newspaper or in front of a TV when we are in the bedroom crying because we don’t know how to engage with your kids is not acceptable. Please get up and come talk with us. Please work with us on a plan to make our marriage a priority.
I love you better when I know I am your priority. I run longer, fight harder for us – for our family – when I know you care. I just need a plan. I need a plan for how to run our household – the finances. I need a plan for how to discipline the children – yours, mine and ours. I need us to be on the same page so that we show team leadership and our children will be strengthened by our unity.
I want the kids to see what a loving, committed marriage looks like. That means you and I will both be working to show that. I understand that it will be difficult to prioritize me over your kids – but for this to work, I need to see you moving towards that – step by step, day by day. The kids will benefit from this in the long run.
Blended family dad: be the brave and courageous leader I know you are. Move toward civility and cooperation with your ex-wife; show your loyalty and stand up for me in front of your kids; discuss – and make – important decisions with me, instead of without me.
I promise that when you slay the big dragons that come to attack our blended family, you will end up a hero and have a marriage that truly looks like what God intended in the first place – along with peace throughout the land.
Well … LOL … I can still dream!