Category Archives: Ex’s Family

4 Tips to Avoid the Summer Divorce Schedule Blues

Lions! Tigers and Bears! Oh my, It's the Summer Season!
Lions! Tigers and Bears! Oh my, It’s the Summer Season!

Oh, boy!  The school year is ending and for many of us it means that the children’s schedules are changing.  We may have the kids for half the summer or camp schedules are starting.  First tip is to remember that every time there is a change, even if it is minor, it will get exaggerated in a divorced family.  Why?  It triggers feelings of uncertainty.  The schedule has changed and we just don’t feel safe.  Our thoughts may go something like this:

* “I just know that she’ll mess with the schedule and ruin our vacation plans.”

* “I just dread taking all the kids on vacation.  It may be a vacation for everyone else, but not me.”

* “Does the ex ever pay for any of these extra activities? She feels so entitled.”

A trigger is just that…a trigger.  It means that we have associated fear and anxiety with something. When the summer schedule changes, our flight or fight mechanism believes that we are at risk because of the thoughts associated with the summer. The fact is that we will all survive the summer and have fun while we are doing it.  Here are 3 tips to avoid those summer divorce schedule blues.

  1. Clear Agreements
    There is nothing worse than a fuzzy schedule for the kids. This is a sure way to get your wires crossed with your ex and have your plans ruined.  Be sure all agreements are in writing as well as having a confirmation meeting to review the details: pick up times, drop off times, any written permissions you may need from the other parent and a general idea of where everyone is going.
  2. Talk to Yourself
    As soon as you start to feel anxious, talk to yourself. Say something like this, “You are fine. Nothing is scary and everyone means well. I wish myself, the kids, their Mom and everyone well. We are all good.”  Breathe.  If you like to exercise, do it. If you like to write, journal your thoughts. These techniques trick the brain into calming down.
  3. Fight the Urge to be the Only Vacation Organizer
    For those of us that like to control everything, fight the urge to be the only vacation organizer. By taking on this role, be cognizant that you will add to your frustration. You will be looking for everyone’s approval.  If a plan goes wrong, your upset will be heightened. You will be looking for acknowledgement which is a road that will lead to disappointment and resentment.  Divide the vacation planning duties among the adults that are going along.
  4. 3. Try to Get Adult Time
    Know thyself. If you know that you are a person that needs quiet time, schedule it as a vacation activity. Let someone else take the kids and take your nap or walk.  This activity is just as valuable as the visit to Seaworld or the beach time.  If possible, get a babysitter for a night or two.
  5. Communicate with the Other Parent
    Be sure the kids are keeping in contact with the other parent. Let them know that they are safe. Do not let Facebook do this communication for them.  Using social media can be a passive aggressive communication tool when you are divorced.  Be up front and clear.  Let the other parent know the time when you are on your way home.  Treat them the way you would want to be treated.

Your attitude can make the summer schedule miserable or fun.  Go into it organized with activities and with the approach that it will be an adventure.  Give everyone a break with the knowledge that the initial transition days will pass.  You will survive with flying colors.

How to Resist Terrorism at Home

When you are at war, you feel alone, isolated and as if no one cares about you. Think about it.  Have you ever argued with someone and found yourself repeating the story over and over again in an effort to get people to be ‘on your side’? This is your effort to not feel alone… Continue Reading

Stepmoms: Are We Too Harsh on the Ex?

Haven’t we all said it or thought it.  Here is the rant. That ex is insane! I mean it. Really insane. How can a mother treat her children that way? That ex is so mean to my partner.  She is completely unreasonable.  What the hell, Bitch? The question is whether or not we are being… Continue Reading

The Stepmother Who Blames: Is That You? (Yup!)

Do you find yourself blaming others for your life situation? See if any of these ‘stepmother’ statements strike a chord with you: “These kids are a nightmare because their mother and father don’t discipline them. It is their fault. Our marriage is a nightmare because the ex tortures us. It is her fault. I cook,… Continue Reading

Twas The Night Before Christmas for Divorced and Remarried Families

TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS by Scott T. Taylor of ‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the Courts, Applications were piling, with time running short; Frantic parents consumed in a flurry of faxes, With lawyers and spouses all arguing Christmas access. No stockings yet hung by the chimney with care, Doubt children… Continue Reading

Best Stepmother Advice! Ever Been Tattled On? Do You Live with a Tattletaler?

Ever been tattled on?  You know what I mean.  Someone tattle taled on you.  Remember tattletaling?  Let me refresh your memory.  According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a tattletale is an informer.  Here are the synonyms listed within the dictionary definition: Synonyms: betrayer, canary [slang], deep throat, fink, informant, nark [British], rat, rat fink, snitch, snitcher,… Continue Reading

What Would I Have Done? – The Stepmother’s Answer

I got divorced when my son was an infant.  In the very beginning, I didn’t hear from my ex’s family.  Understandable.  Through the creative love of a family member (Read my blog, The Best Book Ever Written), I reconnected with my in-laws and a love affair ensued between them and my son.  My son proceeded… Continue Reading

10 Tips to Find Joy in Stepmotherhood-Stepmother Help

Joy?!  What is she talking about?  I’m just trying to survive this stepfamily thing.  Remember, it’s the simple things in life that really make a difference.  How many times have you wondered, “Did I make a mistake?”  Have you harbored thoughts that you may never be happy as a stepmother?  This class gives you 10… Continue Reading

What If Your Family Does Not Like You?-The Evil Stepmother Speaks

When you think about buying a product or service, your preference is the work with someone that you know, like and trust.  It is a basic tenet of business and it takes time.  When you think about businesses that you frequent, how long did it take you to know, like and trust that person? Tell… Continue Reading

Stepmoms: Ever Feel Awkward and Exposed? – The Evil Stepmother Speaks

I can’t help it.  This video just makes me laugh.  It reminds me of how awkward it is when you first join your new family:  both as a new wife and stepmom.  You just feel so awkward and exposed.  Enjoy the cheap laugh! Continue Reading