Bonus Moms & Blended Families – Part 2

Annette K. Brown


Thanks for all of you guys’ incredible responses and dms just after my Aspect I put up about blended people and reward moms – I was executing a Q&A on stories yesterday and realized I in no way posted the component 2! I appreciate currently being ready to convey a a lot more open up dialogue all-around blended households and motherhood as a reward mama.


Q: Do you get a long with Cody’s ex-wife? Do you fellas cling out?

A. Im actually grateful we all get a very long. 

A single thing I wished could have been different for me growing up, was that when my parents bought divorced they would have been friends (I adore each my mothers and fathers extremely substantially and I know no family members is perfect, but it was challenging at occasions emotion that stress). They lived across the nation from every other, so they didn’t have to see just about every other substantially. When I would go to visit my mom I would fly by myself (I really don’t know if they however do this, but I began at like 5 or 6 decades old and my moms and dads would wander me to the gate and then you sit in again row by flight attendant and do the flight on your individual. I really have a ton of pleasurable reminiscences with tremendous form flight attendants who would perform video games and things with me. I assume this is also section of the rationale I figured out to become quite independent at a youthful age, and touring alone has not at any time really terrified me but anyways…), but ya I still generally felt that uncomfortable rigidity any time they were being in the same area. I recall even on my wedding ceremony working day staying worried about making certain both equally parents felt they acquired equivalent focus and enjoy. And possibly that was a little something I established in my head, but it designed me want to make it a priority when we got married that we have a superior partnership with Cody’s ex, so that the young ones in no way felt that stress or strain, and so we could all go to the children functions and it not be awkward. Again, this was not an overnight factor, it took years to get to that point. In particular if this is a fresh new condition, it will consider a lot of time.  But as a kid who has been on that facet of divorce, that was a single point I definitely required distinct for our little ones.

Time, time, time! I believe it all just will take time, but I appreciate talking to their mom about the youngsters and sharing exhilaration for the items they are undertaking, or points they are mastering or likely by means of. We all sit by each individual other at most of the young children video games and gatherings, it’s in a great area.

Q. Do you get a say in generating all of the conclusions about universities and these kinds of. How do you deal with that aspect? 

A. Lengthy tale small, I have no say haha. Cody talks to me about it, but that is 1 of the challenging areas of being a reward mom, you appreciate your reward toddlers and assist increase them but in my situation I’m not genuinely a selection maker. I imply working day to day what we are carrying out Cody and I make your mind up, but even bigger decisions Cody and his ex spouse do the job out together. 

Q. As the bonus moms/mother and father, are you concerned in communication to his ex or just Cody?

A. In our circumstance, Cody and his ex work out facts for the most part. Clearly there are periods when Cody is nevertheless at operate or out of town or something so I decide on up/drop off the youngsters, etcetera. but the bulk of communication is involving her and Cody. We recently began a team text for sporting activities and faculty scheduling and in some cases share pics of the little ones from college or sports much too, but most scheduling goes as a result of them.

Q. How do you deal with aggravation with your action kids’ program?

A. A person thing that took time for me to comprehend and fully grasp is that when you’re a move mum or dad (not always the case, but at the very least in my situation) even if you all get together, at the close of the working day you have minimal say more than holidays, university schedules, genuinely just strategies in typical. For me, somebody who likes to system in advance and be in manage, it’s from time to time tricky. For illustration, when we had been making an attempt to plan a excursion and I would check with Cody if he experienced texted the kids’ mother to make confident specific times work and I would want immediate responses for points 😂 and he’s like I haven’t talked to her nevertheless, and I’m all very well call ideal now, what is the maintain up 😂😂 I at some point realized that 1) sometimes you really do not get fast responses because she has a life too obviously and you just cannot hope immediate responses all the time and 2) points get extended to coordinate and approach than it would with your very own kids, so you have to strategy ahead a minor further more. 

Q. Do you have entire custody? How typically and how extended do your bonus young children stay with you?

A. We have joint custody so it alters. Correct now, each individual other 7 days we have them for Thursday/Friday, and then the next week 4 days Thursday-Sunday.

Q. Would you at any time travel without the need of the bonus youngsters?

A. I think our condition is a very little diverse mainly because we Adore to travel and also journey pretty a bit for do the job, but we normally make absolutely sure to plan all our “big trips” when we can go with each other as a loved ones. For illustration we generally do a large 2 7 days journey every summer months and we always do that with all the little ones. (1 exception is like spring break – we change yrs with their mother for spring break so if Mara and Wes are with their mom these days, we will however take Beckam and Ollie on a spring crack trip). If your family members ordinarily only goes on 1 or 2 excursions a yr, I would for certain try out to make it do the job to incorporate absolutely everyone. We have so a lot exciting when we vacation with all the children and Beckam and Ollie really like getting with Mara and Wes as much as we do, so we want we could always travel alongside one another but it does not normally perform out that way. That is another detail you comprehend just after you have youngsters of your individual- both dad and mom want as much time as they can with their young children. If it is a challenge to get more days or switch schedules for journeys, attempt to have perspective and comprehend their other guardian wishes to dangle out with them as a great deal as doable far too. Not indicating it never ever sucks or their aren’t continue to let down events, but its kind of an “it is what it is” condition. But truthfully it normally feels like a little something is missing when we vacation with out them. 

Q. Do they go faculty 30 minutes away? How does that function?

A. They used to dwell 10 minutes away from us for like 8 a long time and not long ago they moved a few towns absent. I’m so thankful they are even now inside of driving distance for the reason that for me expanding up, that wasn’t the scenario, so I’m just grateful we nonetheless get to see them so substantially. But it has definitely designed it a little far more challenging, specifically now that they are in various sporting activities, and Mara and Wes are in two unique educational institutions (junior large and elementary) they go at various moments. Everybody has various techniques and schedules soon after university, so it gets chaotic but we are glad they are nonetheless close.

Q. Are they open to talking about matters they do with their mother about you?

A. I feel like they are super open with us, but I guess I wouldn’t essentially know how much they are selecting to share. I know as a child, from time to time I would experience nervous telling the other parent what I was accomplishing when I was with my other father or mother (even now sometimes, essentially haha) since I did not want to make the other mum or dad experience lousy, so I hope Mara and Wes don’t really feel that way but also I guess I can not know 100% for guaranteed due to the fact we aren’t with them 24/7. 

Q. How do you split up firsts or specific periods with their mom and you fellas?

We haven’t experienced a lot of firsts where we just cannot the two demonstrate up somewhere to aid them. For their first time to Disney, we did question the kids’ mom if we could just take them but other than that, there haven’t been a whole lot of periods when we need to split up firsts.  

Q. How do you men tackle holiday seasons/birthdays? 

It’s kind of changed in excess of the decades. We always split Christmas – I know thats not as popular. I assume a great deal of people today do every single other Xmas. Thanksgiving and Spring Break we alternate each 12 months. At times Easter falls in excess of Spring Split, etc. Birthdays have improved – in some cases we alternate a long time and often we adhere to the plan. When they ended up young, one particular particular person would get them the night time before and 50 % of their birthday, and then the other would get the other fifty percent of the day and the evening. At first I think absolutely everyone was hypersensitive and micromanaging time and factors have peaceful considering that then. I would get in the mentality of making an attempt to make positive every little thing was ‘fair’. But in a blended household, it’s unachievable to make every thing 100% honest.

We would also have traditions that we do each individual year with the kids, like carving pumpkins and decorating gingerbread properties. And we’ll wait around to do people traditions until we have Mara and Wes with us so we can do it all alongside one another as a spouse and children. I assume it makes the holidays sense extra distinctive and we’re even far more intentional about our time with each other during these instances.


Q. Do you truly feel you require to know other reward mothers for assistance? I don’t have any person in my lifestyle.

A. I know like a single or two other reward moms but now that I’m thinking about it I never know if I have ever seriously talked to them a ton about it. My phase mother is and I have talked to her of course 🙂 We have 2 stage dads inside of our extended household, but usually I come to feel like my actual physical circle of bonus moms is pretty modest. If you’re joining an on the internet team of other blended families, I would seem for a single that’s objective is a positive family surroundings – there are so numerous that can come to be super negative and that strength will just detract. But I imagine bonus moms can be a excellent assistance for each other. 

Self-discipline/PARENTING FOR BLENDED People:

Q. Did you do any discipline when they have been young? 

A. Of course, but almost nothing important.

Q. How do you not action on any toes/do you feel like you can self-control them? Do you ever put boundaries or is it Cody’s ‘job’?

A. I in no way want Mara and Wes to experience like they get taken care of in another way, so we try to say dependable via all the things and that contains with disciplining and procedures. For example: If they make a mess in the residing space with Beckam, I would not only make Beckam clean up it. And if they really do not pay attention, which they are youngsters and often they really do not haha, they will get a various chore. But I do that precise thing for all the young ones. 

There are 10000% moments I will say to Cody nevertheless, will you be the enforcer this time, I do not want them to dislike me.  And from time to time he will, and other instances he’s like you are continue to a mother to them, they adore you and it’s ok for them to have repercussions. I think he gages my mood haha. I’ve been in their lifetime around 10 several years, and know they enjoy me, but sometimes continue to be concerned “what if they believe I’m the evil step mom!” So I think you gage what feels most organic and at ease for you.

Q. Do you give your reward little ones chores?

A. 100%, but all of the youngsters have weekly chores (– 1 point Cody and I the two really feel strongly about is teaching our kids perform ethic, so that goes for all the children clearly). For us it just would not make sense if only Beckam and Ollie have been undertaking weekly chores and Mara and Wes just sat on the sofa. We are a spouse and children and we all have obligations.

Do I at any time truly feel guilty about it?  There are some occasions when it is the past hour or two in advance of Mara and Wes go again to their mom’s dwelling and Cody tells them they need to have to clear up a mess and choose up the area, and I tell him they only have 1 hour remaining and to permit them just have fun. He suggests no, they are still our little ones they have to have acquire care of their tasks, which is really what we would do with Beckam and Ollie. So the moments when I am a small a lot more lax about chores or selecting up soon after themselves is before they go away, but in the course of the regular day to working day, they do the identical factors my young ones do. (And Cody is definitely good about staying reliable no make a difference the circumstances.)

Ok that wraps up this submit! A whole lot of you have thoughts or tips about working with organic mothers or developing a bond with your reward toddlers – I’m actually want to be an open e-book and share as significantly as I can, so I’ll conserve that for the subsequent several posts, together with ideas for bonus mothers and ideas for bio moms considering that I acquired a couple of inquiries from you fellas much too ❤️ I’ve liked hearing from you all about your have blended families and how a lot you like your reward toddlers!

XX, Christine



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