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A small triumph

  • My stepkids' mother could not be a more different person than I am. This is neither compliment nor criticism, just a statement of fact. Another fact is that her children, my stepkids, uniformly perfer her style to mine.


    They like me well enough (all but one...), but in any contrast/comparison between she and I, she will come out on top. Now, I don't set myself up to compete with her. The children have no idea I feel this way, but to me, it's a self-evident fact that there is no fighting. It is what it is. She is their mother, after all, and I'm just .... Mary. Dad's wife.

    We had a huge snowstorm here yesterday. The kids were to go back to their mother's house, but the roads were impassible, so it was agreed they'd stay the night. No problem. When we woke up, "Snow day?!?!?" was the question of the hour.

    I listened to the radio. All buses were cancelled for all school boards, English, French, Catholic, Public. The schools themselves were open, but with no buses and people being told not to drive unless they had to (to allow snow removal crew to do their jobs), I told the kids they could stay home.

    And, lo, there was great rejoicing. Because hey, I've been a teacher. I know what happens on days when the buses are closed but the schools are open: Nothing. For the few children who do show up, you can't go ahead with the curriculum, only to have to repeat the lessons when everyone arrive in a day or two. It's just glorified babysitting.

    The children are delighted, and we start making plans for the day. All sorts of possibilities tossed around: Christmas baking, boad games, a walk to the local park to flounder in the snow... until... there's a sudden loud honking from on the street. It's my stepkids' mother, there to drive them to school. We had no idea she was coming. They go out to try to negotiate with her, but "negotiations" must've been curtailed abruptly, because the car pulled away less than a minute after they reached the car.

    I know they must have been disappointed. And for once, I know that, in a comparison with their mother, I looked good. Without even trying. I don't think that's ever happened before.

    I shouldn't take such satisfaction. But I do.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by MaryP on 18th December 2007
  • "She is their mother, after all, and I'm just .... Mary. Dad's wife." Change the name , and I could say the same. My stepkids like me just fine as well, but I'm not Mom. In a similar situation, I'd probably be feeling about as chipper about things as you are.

    I've lived places where snow is unusual enough that if there are no buses, there's no school. From what you describe, opening schools on such a day hardly seems worth it. Too bad your stepkids didn't get to stay home.
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Florinda Pendley Vasquez on 18th December 2007
  • I hear you, MaryP. It's not a competition, but it still feels good to come out on top every once in a while...
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Lylah M. Alphonse on 18th December 2007
  • On this end, there really isn't any competition because the kids' mom rarely sees them and creates so much chaos for them, they actually PREFER me (not necessarily because I'm so awesome - just because I'm normal and stable). While I sometimes feel a small sense of victory ("whoo hoo for me";), that fades pretty quickly when I realize that the kids' mom will never get to know them the way I do -- she'll never know all their quirks, likes/dislikes, stages, etc.

    Kind of sad...
    Flag as inappropriate Posted by shanita257 on 26th February 2008

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