Being a father is one of the scariest undertakings there is for a man. Thus, men who step into the role of parent to children that are not their own should be admired, because their task is often even more challenging. According to the Huffington Post, the following tips will help you navigate being a step-father:
- Make sure your spouse understands that you do not know what to do with her children, especially if you have never had kids. Ask her to guide you through the basics of parenting until you get a firm foundation set.
- Set clear boundaries in the family. Ask your spouse what the family rules are so you have an understanding of what is expected and can help set the same boundaries in your actions.
- If your step-children exhibit challenging behavior, talk to your spouse about it. You might be surprised to learn that this behavior occurred long before you were in the picture. For example, many kids have meltdowns when they are overly tired, so if you know the warning signs you can be prepared.
- Openly communicate with your spouse about providing her children with stability and consistency. If you behave similarly to the children’s mother, the children will feel more comfortable around you.
- No matter how small they are, always keep your promises. If you must break a promise, make sure you explain to the children what happened and how you will make it right with them.
- Children know when you are being fake, so make sure you are yourself around them.
- Show the children love. Although they may not respond immediately, kids thrive on knowing somebody cares for them. Expressing your emotions verbally or with a simple hug can go a long way in enhancing your relationship with your step-children.
- Make sure your spouse treats you as an equal member of the family. If she views you as the “stepdad,” so will her children.
- Have fun with your new family. Start creating memories of your own and having adventures that you and your children will remember forever.
If you need assistance with your divorce, contact the Men’s Divorce Law Firm today. Our approach to family law is quite simple: we listen to you; we return your calls promptly; we keep you prepared and informed; we respect your time; we understand your concerns; and, most importantly, we care.