Stepfather; who is? The relationship with him in the family of stepdaughter and stepson, the psychology of such relationships, and what to do if they are wrong. A relationship with a stepfather is a relationship in a family where the children of a woman with whom a man lives are not related by blood; that is, he can only be called a father conditionally. Often, the microclimate in such families is tense, leading to scandals and creating an unhealthy family environment.
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Who is the stepfather?
From a legal point of view, a stepfather is a man married to a woman (although in everyday life, it often happens that two people live together without formalizing the family relationship) who has children from a previous marriage. They are not descended from him. The boy is called a stepson, and the girl is a stepdaughter.
Officially, the stepfather has no right to his wife’s children. She does not even dare to scold for absences at school because she can always encounter a hostile reaction from a child, they say, and who are you to criticize me?
For the stepfather to have rights over the stepson, he must adopt. But this is far from accurate; for example, a child does not perceive another person’s personality in the house. And most importantly, the father will want to leave his offspring, especially if they have a good relationship and he is not deprived of parental rights. In this case, it is generally impossible to talk about adoption.
It is important to know! The relationship with a stepfather is not legalized in the Russian Family Code. He has no rights over his stepson or stepdaughter. However, the latter has moral obligations towards the stepfather. They must support him in case of disability, even if they have not adopted or will be adopted, children.
Psychological climate in a family with a stepfather
Once upon a time, there was an average family; peace and tranquility reigned. But at one wrong moment, the couple’s relationship deteriorated. Love suddenly disappeared; constant screaming and swearing began in the family. After unsuccessful attempts at reconciliation, the couple divorced. The young woman was left alone with a child (two) in her arms.
Child support from her ex-partner is meager and not enough for a child. Money is scarce, but problems abound. She is always at work; there is no time to follow her son. And he should be clothed, fed, and sent to school. God forbid it looked worse than others there! It’s hard to lift a kid alone.
And then a reasonable person pays attention, gives gifts, and offers his help. He has nothing against his child and treats him well. So why not live with him? Love may not be significant, but most importantly, it will help put the son on his feet. So a man, a stranger to the boy, appeared in the house.
He was very disturbed by the disagreement between his mother and father and the appearance of another “dad,” which he met with hostility. How the relationship between stepfather and child develops depends on the elders. Will the mother convince her son that she has met a good person who will strongly support the family? Will, the stepfather, be able to draw the boy to him and convince him that he is not indifferent to him; he is sincerely interested in his fate?
If a stepfather constantly teaches his stepson in a directive tone, he is unlikely to win his trust. Instead, he will turn the little man against himself. All such an “educational” process, all its moral sense, will be in vain. And this means tension in the family and failure in relationships.
Often in such cases, the mother is confused. She doesn’t know what to do. He will protect his son, which means you will have to part with the chosen one. And this is not easy, divorce again and loneliness again, sad daily life without a person in the family. When a woman takes the side of her husband (roommate), nervousness comes into the house.
Children feel fake in relationships with adults and become mistrustful, moody, and angry. Suppose there is an unhealthy atmosphere in the family, for example. In that case, adults often kiss the bottle, and the child “runs completely” and can leave home.
It is important to know! When a stepfather treats his stepson with compassion but not indifferently, the child will reach out to him, and the little and the big man will find a common language.
The role of the child’s mother when the stepfather is in the family
When divorced women decide to start a family again, they need to think about their children. And what will happen to them? How will they feel if a man shows up in the house and says he is “Daddy”?
It all depends on the personality of such a mother and how convincingly she will be able to explain to her child that the family needs a new “dad,” she loves this person, he too, and hopes that the son (daughter) will not have hostile relations with his stepfather.
The main thing is that the woman is responsible for her choice. After all, her life depends not only on him. The well-known Russian proverb “measure seven times, cut once” has to be followed here. A new man in her life is a big responsibility. He has his tastes and habits; it is likely that he has crossed the house’s threshold and begins to “instill” his morals in children.
Family financial stability is lovely! But from a moral point of view, what will the relationship of a stepfather with a stepson (stepdaughter) look like? It’s something to think about and consider.
A woman must be aware that the new man in the house is a stranger to her children, no matter how good he may be. And it is unlikely that he will be relative. He has no right to them. It is essential that he understands this and does not try to download the rights.
The love of adults should not overshadow the lives of small family members! They should not feel any discomfort. It will be good if a piece of this great love reaches them and they think about it. Then the relationship between the stepfather and the children will improve. And the role of the mother is excellent here.
You do not need to demand more from your chosen one than he can give the kids. It is enough that he treats them well. If he doesn’t want them to call him father, there’s no need to insist. Children are in charge of their own emotions.
If they are already old enough, the mother must explain that they will soon start a family on their own, so it is not worth judging strictly that she brought a man, a stranger to them, into the house.
It is important to know! If the mother’s conversation with the children does not find a response in the children’s hearts, they look at their stepfather with hostility and stubbornly do not want to communicate with him; it is worth contacting a psychologist. He will help improve family relations.
Children’s relationship with a stepfather
Children’s relationship with their stepfathers depends on several factors. First, from the behavior of the mother. Will she be able to explain to her child the separation from their father and the appearance of another person in the house? Here the child’s age matters, his ability to critically perceive changes in his life. And, of course, a lot depends on the personality of the stepfather and his attitude towards his stepchildren. Let’s take a closer look at the relationship between a stepfather, stepson, and stepdaughter.
Relationship between stepfather and stepson
The relationship between stepfather and stepson can be complicated. It is an example. The child is still small; it wants a daddy; it wants to call a new man in the house father. But he resists and explains restraint that it is impossible to call him that because the boy has a father.
How come other boys have a dad, but he doesn’t? The kid wants warmth and tries to find a solid male handshake but sees indifference towards him. He isolates himself and does not perceive his stepfather. And here, you need to use remarkable tact so that the child thaws his soul and adequately perceives the new family situation. He did not look excitedly at his new “daddy.”
The kid is utterly incomprehensible in the adult relationship; he remembers his father and envies his mother for his uncle. And it is good if the mother has enough tact to explain to her son why it happened that she brought a new man into the house. But it may not be enough, and she will break into a scream and bang her head. He is hoping in this way to restrain his son so that he “falls in love” with his stepfather.
Such an inadequate educational approach is unlikely to be effective. He will only force the child to turn away, shut up dully, and enter the world of his childhood experiences, which adults do not have access to.
The child’s confidence needs to be earned! Suppose the stepfather tries to draw everything up in his way to establish his order in the family. In that case, the child will meet it with hostility. In this case, there is no need to talk about warm and trusting relationships.
When a man loves a woman with a child, he has to think that he has to adapt to the microclimate of a new family, but not cut everything off his shoulder. Love should not be selfish; if you love your wife (concubine), try to love her son.
No need to fool around with him. The kid should feel that an adult is sincerely his friend and reaches out to a strong person. It is unlikely that he will forget his father; maybe he meets him sometimes. But he will have a good relationship with his stepfather, which will be the key to harmonious, happy relationships in the family. And it’s worth a lot.
It is important to know! If the stepson does not perceive his stepfather, it is necessary to consult a psychologist; he will advise what needs to be learned in this case. The specialist will help the woman not to lose contact with her son and the stepfather to establish a solid relationship with him.
Relationship between stepfather and stepdaughter
The relationship between stepfather and stepdaughter has its nuances. Finding a common language with a girl who considers her uncle a stranger in the family is not easy. In such a difficult situation, the child’s age is significant. It’s one thing when a little girl goes to kindergarten or primary school. It is easier to find an approach for such a child.
If the mother explained why her father left the family, the girl would not throw a tantrum; she would calmly accept her stepfather. It all depends on the new “dad.” As he gives the child more attention and affection, she will reach out to him and begin to see him as a family member.
Another question is when the girl is all yearning for her father. Then the appearance of a stranger in the house is viewed negatively. She will envy him in her mother, compare him with her dad, and find fault with all the little things in his appearance and behavior. Thus defending their children’s independence, their right to their feelings – to love who they believe to be a native person.
Suppose all the stepfather’s attempts to improve relations with his stepdaughter are unsuccessful, and the mother is also unable to set her daughter up for a healthy “wave” of relationship. In that case, it is necessary to consult a psychologist. He will talk to the girl and advise what to do in this case.
Perhaps the child is simply notorious: squeezed inwardly, afraid of new contacts, it is difficult to approach. In this case, he needs to be helped to remove the internal clamps that interfere with communication. All this is in the power of adults; if they cannot do it, you should seek a psychologist’s help.
And it’s entirely different when the child is already an adult. During puberty (puberty), not all girls perceive the situation satisfactorily if the mother brings another man into the house. It hurts me.
For a daughter with the maximalism inherent in adolescence, it seems that it is too late for mothers to start new novels. It just doesn’t fit in her head. A tense situation is created in the family.
The daughter does not perceive her stepfather, she is not allowed to speak to him, or it is strictly polite to call him “you.” Attempts on his part to change the situation; for example, he does not reduce the giving of gifts and does not change anything. Relationships remain cold.
A single woman with a moderately grown daughter should think ten times before a man enters the house. A somewhat ambiguous situation arises here. The new man may see the girl as a woman. The girl feels the lustful eyes of her stepfather, but the trouble is that she is not allowed to tell her mother about it.
In revenge, she will meet dubious acquaintances. She will share her domestic problems in a new company under wine or other couples. And at home, he will look at his stepfather like a wolf and constantly argue with his mother. Sometimes these teenagers feel lonely and abandoned and leave home.
It often happens in dysfunctional families. The case can even reach a criminal level when the stepfather tries to rape or rape the stepdaughter. From time to time, articles appear in the media that describe such wild cases.
It is important to know! They say, “love is evil; you will love the goat.” A single woman with a grown daughter should think carefully before a man enters the house so that he does not turn out to be the same goat. You cannot save grief in the family later.
How do establish communication between children and their stepfathers?
How do you establish a relationship with a stepfather, so the children feel good and calm down? It is not necessary to see a psychologist. It seems that the man has enough sense not to bring the relationship with them to a dead end.
Some daily tips to help a stepfather in a new family:
- The mother should explain to the children that she loves this person and hopes they will appreciate him too. You don’t have to worship him at all, but it is necessary to treat him with respect. It is the key to a calm atmosphere in the family. Besides, material life will be better. She will not be able to put them on her feet.
- A stepfather should not immediately try to break the estrangement. It is pretty standard that the child does not perceive the new person directly and looks at him carefully for some time. One must pass such a trial period with dignity so that the stepson appreciates and believes that he is the one who not only needs his mother he will also be good to him.
- The distance between stepfather and stepson (stepdaughter) will always remain. No need to get too annoying into their soul. They will never forget their father, even if he wasn’t always the perfect dad.
- The best way to improve relationships with children is to treat their mothers well. Suppose they understand that their stepfather loves her. In that case, many of the rough edges that appeared at the beginning of the relationship will disappear by themselves.
- Kindness and interest (but not importance!) in the fate of children will help break the ice of mistrust. Joint walks, visits to various events, and celebrations held together are excellent reasons to establish warm and trusting relationships.
- Suppose a stepson or stepdaughter is messing up, for example, being jealous of the mother or doing something wrong. In that case, you should not “bump” them harshly. No one likes morals; it is better to try to call them into a frank conversation to clarify the situation that causes them so much concern and suggest a non-intrusive way to a fair solution. Let’s say, “Maybe you did the right thing, but you could have done it differently.”
- The stepfather must remain calm in all cases, even not very pleasant ones. It will help him not to lose control of himself and the state of affairs in the family. A reasonably “ruined” position will only strengthen his power among children.
- When a child turns to his stepfather with some questions, one should not turn him away; they say, he is busy, let’s talk later. It is necessary to put aside your business, listen carefully to your stepson (stepdaughter), and be sure to say that it is pleasant to communicate and try to help. Such contact only builds trust.
- A stepfather should never insist that a child call him “Daddy.” Here it is up to the child to decide. And no need to be offended if he says “you.” The distance is there; one must never forget that he has a father.
- Do not show affectionate love. For example, he was directing exaggerated attention, serving with gifts so that the stepson (stepdaughter) does not believe that the stepfather is profiting from them. It could be playing a bad joke. Children will begin to manipulate such an attitude towards themselves for selfish purposes, becoming hilarious and selfish.
It is important to know! The Golden Rule states, “you should treat people as you would like to be treated.” Children, even stepchildren, are no exception. Suppose the stepfather treats the stepson or stepdaughter as this principle teaches. In that case, he will be rewarded a hundredfold in the future. The good is never forgotten.
The appearance of a stepfather in a family is stressful for children. To accept the new man as their “dad,” he should show restraint, be attentive, and not enter the soul of his stepson and stepdaughter. And in no case should you try to re-educate your new “children.” It will only cause conflict. They will stop perceiving this kind of “Dad.” And this is a lousy microclimate in the family, which will affect the relationship with the woman he loves, the children’s mother. After all, it is not for nothing that it is sung: “The most important thing is the weather in the house, and everything else is panic…”