Friday, January 13, 2012

The Wicked Queen Reigns

Sometimes you ask for something and even though you know that you won't like the answer or the outcome you ask for it anyway.  My step-tween daughter and I are going through what I am starting to call the impish elven elevens, but thankfully they are almost over. My aunt says that if the two of us can make it to her twelfth birthday that things will work out alright...That's less than a month away so I am crossing my fingers that we both still have a full head of hair and I don't have TOO many more wrinkles.

One of the biggest challenges that we are dealing with right now is following directions and staying on task.  As parents my husband and I have tried to find ways to provide her with structure while still allowing her to be a kid, but it's really hard.  She pretty much has a 100% track record of taking  three miles of liberty when she's given two inches.  It's really really really frustrating.

We have created a list of specific consequences for specific actions so that there isn't any confusion about what will happen when she isn't doing what she is supposed to be doing.  Lately it feels like she is living in a constant state of consequences and I finally understand why my parents said it really hurt them to have to give us kids consequences and punishments.  It SUCKS!  It makes me sad and angry and frustrated because it's not just about being exhausted from trying to teach her I feel like I never get to have fun with her.  If I let my guard down for just a minute she's five miles down the road and I'm coughing up her dust.

Anyway, I've gotten off track.  One of our consequences is to have her write sentences or even a reflective essay of  usually just a page or two.  Last night we/I had to dole out yet another consequence and since sentences and essays were boring me and seemingly ineffectual I took a risk that I actually knew I would regret but I did it anyway.  I told her to write me a story, the only thing that I required of the story was that it be about a girl who didn't like to follow directions.  I told her it could be funny or sad or whatever she wanted other than the one thing that I asked of her.

I did this knowing that I was risking being painted as a real "Wicked Stepmother" and that I needed to steel myself to whatever she came up with, it was after all my idea.  She did not disappoint the story that came back had her dad as the loving father who calls her princess and dotes on her morning noon and night.  I on the other hand came back as the heavy handed and mean step-mom who was always punishing the girl.  She might as well have been princess Cinderella and I may as well have been an unfeeling evil queen.  Like I said I expected it, but I didn't expect it to hurt as much as it did.  It's hard not to take it all personally to wonder why she doesn't remember the way that I try to tell her I love her even when I'm having to set her straight.  I know that I can't think of it that way, but my heart feels differently.  It hurts and there's really no way around that.

Being a full time step parent sucks sometimes.  I miss the days when I was vacation step-mom.  We got to do all of the fun stuff together before the real life kicked in.  I try to tell myself to see the bigger picture, but it still doesn't make my heart hurt any less.

I don't regret giving her the opportunity to write the story or really even what she presented to me, in some way I think it was good for her all kids need to vent their frustrations and a step parent can be an easy scape goat, especially when the step parent is a stay at home parent and the one enforcing most of the punishments. 

I know that no matter what I can't let her see that she hurt my feelings.  I have to let her have this and I have to move on, but you guys....I really hate being a Wicked Step-Mother sometimes, it looks like my heart is the one going in the box today.

In need of a fairy godmother~



  1. Well said,honey. I don't believe it will ultimately be a thankless job, even though it feels that way now. Xxxxxooooo

  2. Parenting is tough sometimes. But I think it's okay if she sees that this hurt you. After all, it only hurts you because you love her. Good luck.