When you move in or even get married to a partner who is bringing children from another relationship it can be quite the adjustment not just for the children, but for you as well. You see creating some kind of bond can be very tough, especially if the kids see you as the reason their parents are not together even if you had nothing to do with it! It can be a very tense situation and if you do not handle it right, then your relationship with your partner can be doomed. So today I want to share a few thoughts and ideas for bonding with your step children.
Let The Step Kid Take Charge
Now I am not saying let them do whatever they want to do in the house. But when it comes to your relationship with them, let them take the lead when it comes to how fast the relationship builds. Do not be to forward when trying to get to know them. Take an interest in them and their activities, but do not push them to spend time with you in the early days if they do not want to. It may be that they are still trying to adjust to their new life with you in it. Let them set the pace for how the relationship should build.
You Are Not The New Mom Or Dad
Never make this mistake of trying to act like you are their new mom or dad. You have to make it crystal clear that you are not trying to replace anyone, but that you love their mom or dad and you just want to be there for them when they need you. Never in a million years say something like “ I am your new mom”, this is going to build up a barrier that is going to be very hard to break down.
Be Patient & Work At It
It can take time to build a bond, some people say it can even take a year or two to build up some kind of meaningful relationship with their step children. But the key is to just be patient and let things develop at a natural pace. But time to time ask them if they want to do something, grab a movie, shoot some hoops or whatever it is they are into. Developing a meaningful bond will not happen overnight, but if you are there for them and make an effort then it can happen. For example my stepdaughter loved the Twilight movies, so I asked her if I could watch them with her next time she did. It gave us something to do together and it showed that I had an interest in her.
Help With Homework
You may be surprised to hear this, but helping with schooling is a great way to start the foundations for a good relationship with stepchild. Do not force yourself into it. But if they are doing their homework, offer to help or if you know they are struggling with a subject in school, ask if they want help. Do not just jump in and help. Make sure you ask first and at first they will be hesitant, but again this is a way to show that you are interested in their life.
Be A Cheerleader
If your stepchild has an activity say a sport or maybe they are into things like cheerleading or some kind of music activity, when they have a show or a game, be there in the audience, cheering them on and showing your support. Do not be critical, just be there to offer support and give advice when they ask for it.