We, in Echt-land, have found ourselves in the crosshairs of step-parenting hell. A subject that no one really seems to tell the truth about but maybe more people should....because easy? It's not. Gut wrenching, heartbreaking, stressful? Yes. Yes and a gazillion more yesses. Oh my God, yes!
The blending of two families is very similar (in my mind) to putting together a 40,000 piece puzzle that has to fit in 1 square foot. A very tiny, very intricate, very very delicate puzzle except with a puzzle you can walk away when you get frustrated and come back when you're ready for some more. With a family, there is no walking away...walking away signifies giving up and I'm not giving up. I do feel as though I am knees and elbows deep most of the time, ass deep often and barely able to keep my head up and out of the politics of the my kid, your kid, this kid, that kid, you, you, you blame game. Fingers accusingly pointing everywhere but inward to our own hearts. You might not like what you see if you start digging around in there....I will tell you that from any viewpoint, it isn't a pretty sight.
I could say that I have a leg up on a lot of people when it comes to blended families since I was raised in one and practice I do have. From the childs perspective not from the parents. I know as a child, it is fucking hard...it's hard to trust, it's hard to believe, it's hard to relax within it and I know it takes years sometimes before you are comfortable with the fact that this other person posing as a parent is here to stay. That they aren't leaving you and it's ok to fall head over heels in love with them. I stand in a different position now. I am the parent and the OTHER person posing as a parent. I am the one that took daddy away in a sense. I am the imposter, the intruder, the evil-doer. The reason, in her mind, that her mom and dad aren't together.
I am also the glue holding everything together. The shaky, unsure hands supporting a very unstable foundation hoping and praying that it doesn't all come crashing down around me. Do I need help? Hell yes I need help but the really ugly truth here is that my husband is of the "what's yours is yours, what's mine is yours but what's yours is definitely NOT mine" mentality. Really cool, huh? Yeah, I think so too. It's really hard to be nice when you can barely look at your love anymore because resentment is so fucking thick you need an electric carving knife to get through it.
So, where do we go and what do we do? No one is going to win this way, least of all our babies. Are we giving up? Hell no but we can't continue wading through this cesspool of anger, disgust and resentment much longer.