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A MOTHER: step mother

I come from a blended family myself, I have a step dad and 2 step sisters (and an adopted sister too!) and we all blended together in our teenage years. I’d honestly never really considered that people become step parent’s to young children, because of my own experiences I always imagine step parents being introduced at an older age, but actually here in the UK between 11-15% of families with dependent children are blended families. 

You may have also seen this week that Kate Ferdinand is launching a new podcast 'blended' and she has been really open about her struggles with being a stepmother, especially with feelings of isolation on Mother's Day. It's great to see conversations opening up more about the realities of motherhood and i'm really happy that we can be apart of that with this A MOTHER series.

And now to introduce Holly, a new mother to baby Thea but also a step mother to Hudson. Holly has opened up about her journey into motherhood with both children and some of the struggles she has experienced. 

 

 1. How did you find becoming a step-parent to Hudson and what age was he? Was it an easy transition?

Hudson was 20 months when I met him, I had been seeing my partner for about 6 months, but obviously only when he didn’t have Hudson, he talked about him all the time, so it kind of felt weird that he was such a big part of his life but I didn’t know him, so when I eventually did meet him it all just seemed to click into place. My sister has children that I am very close to, so I wasn’t nervous about being around Hudson. 

 

 2. What was the biggest struggle when adjusting to this new family life of being a step-parent?

More than anything it’s just hard when you have an ex partner involved in your life and situation, I’m not used to that from any previous relationships, and of course I will have opinions that may differ in terms of approaches with Hudson but that comes secondary to the approach his Mum will want to take. Having my own child, I totally understand this but it is hard. 

3. How have things changed over time, for example do you feel more comfortable with things like setting boundaries/ discipline etc?

I have always been firm but fair with my nephews and I have continued to follow this approach with Hudson, of course over time you feel more comfortable in doing this, and what’s great is that Curtis has always let me by myself with Hudson and supported anything I have done with him, so that makes things easier too. We are very similar in the way we like to parent, if anything Curtis is a little softer than me. 

 

4. I love that even after Thea was born you dedicate some time for just you and Hudson, It seems you have a really great bond. Did you worry about your relationship with Hudson when your own baby was born?

We both massively worried about the impact of having Thea on Hudson as we love him so much. Our situation is maybe different to a lot, as we have Hudson a lot, at least 50% of the time and see him most days, but we didn’t want him to think ‘why is Thea getting to stay at Daddy’s and I have to go home’ or any element of feeling left out. 

 

 5. How have you found the adjustment period to a family of 4 with Hudson only with you part time?

We have been through a few different phases with Hudson since having Thea, at first he was infatuated by her, then he became quite jealous if Curtis was holding her, and saw her as mine, however 3 months in Hudson has now become much more clingy to me, especially as I’ve made a point of doing more with him on my own, and I would say our relationship is more like he was before I had Thea. In terms of how he is with her, well he just loves her so much and it’s absolutely adorable to see!  

 

6. What are your top tips for someone becoming a step-parent?

I get a lot of messages about this….I think the absolute key wherever it’s possible is having a good relationship with the other Parent of the child. Hudson’s Mum and I have a good relationship, that started on a good footing as i proactively went to meet her before I met Hudson, we get on as well as you would expect in the situation and always put Hudson first. For me that is of the utmost importance being a step-parent, as the children will pick up on it. 

I treat Hudson as if he’s my own, and always have done, and I wouldn’t want it to be any other way. 

You can follow Holly's journey here  

 We're nearly at the end of our week of conversations with mothers in celebration of Mother's Day and i want to say a huge thanks to everyone who has taken part and also to those who have spent time reading the posts. 

 

 

 

 

 

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