Hi! My name is Jennifer, but please, call me Jen! All my friends do!
I’m a remarried mother to all things; two dogs, a cat, two biological kids and four step-kids! That’s a lot of kids y’all (Six, if you’re counting)!!!
I met my current husband when his kids were six thru thirteen. Mine were thirteen and eleven. He had been divorced a couple of years when I came along, with a live-in girlfriend between his ex-wife and myself. No one could accuse me of being a homewrecker.
My timeline is a bit more muddy, if you will. I knew my now husband before I divorced. We met at work. In full disclosure, my divorce was not final when we became intimate. Also in full disclosure, it would have been had my Ex-husbands now jailed divorce attorney not been a total douche canoe causing he and I both ALOT of money and time. No. I don’t feel guilty, so keep your messages and letters.
We’ve been married five years and together seven. Being the product of a broken home and subsequent blended family, I thought I knew what I was doing. I was WRONG! Growing up, I had two different step-moms, a step-dad, three step-sisters, an adopted sister, and biological brother. What I didn’t have was a good example of what a healthy step-family looked like. My mom and dad disliked each other intensely, right up to my moms passing last year. My first step-mom was alright, and clearly loved my brother and I. His third wife is a gem, but has never had children of her own and lacks, I feel, a maternal instinct towards us kids. We were older when they married, sixteen, seventeen, and eighteen (adopted sister by my dads second wife and my first stepmom).
Are you confused? It’s a lot, I know! My dad was EOW (every other weekend) father up until he divorced stepmom #1 and moved in with the future stepmom #2. At that point, we stopped going on regular visits. Stepmom #2 had a studio apartment if I remember correctly, and we didn’t “fit” into that new life very well.
My mom was not above reproach herself. My stepdad had three daughters with the standard EOW visitation. When he married my mom, I remember them coming regularly for awhile, but then visitations dying off as the girls entered middle and high school. In addition, my mom wasn’t very motherly towards them either. I remember Christmas mornings where my brother and I would have piles of gifts, and my step-sisters would have half as much. That must have been horrible for them. I can’t imagine! It wasn’t until we were all in adulthood that I was able to form a relationship with one of my step-sisters.
I did not co-parent with my ex-husband. Our divorce was contentious and a nightmare, and he’s still salty. We parallel parented. He did his thing at his house, and I did mine. I had primary custody for much of their upbringing making it easier to parent in a way I felt was best for them, and he had every other weekend visitation. My husband shares custody with his ex-wife and her husband, and we all do our best to co-parent. I wish I could say it’s without complications, but as everyone in a step-family knows. Even when it’s good, it’s COMPLICATED!
This is my journey of all things blended; of me reaching to be a better person; of my personal growth journey. Follow along with me as I reach for MORE, whatever that may be!