Stepmother Lament: He Doesn’t Do Anything for Me!

stepmother, step family, blended, divorce, mother, parenting, remarriage
Stepmothers Often Do All the Work

Once, I did a podcast called “I May Not be First on the List, But Can I Get on the List?”  In this podcast, I was highlighting a common feeling among stepmothers.  It feels as if we are just not important.  It is like we are invisible.  In fact, the only time that we become really visible is when work has to be done:  picking kids up, packing lunches, doing laundry, keeping the house in some sort of viable shape and cooking meals.

To make matters worse, we sometimes wonder, “Does he ever think about planning a romantic moment for me?”  Intellectually, we know that our partners are as overwhelmed as we are, yet, we long for that feeling of being loved.  We don’t want to have to tell him that we want him to plan that weekend or purchase that thoughtful gift.  We just want him to do it…without being asked or prodded.  After all, he should know that we need romantic encouragement.  He should know how important this is to us. We’ve told him a million times.

Here’s the bottom line.  I already feel as if I have to plan everything.  For once, I want him to do something….something for me…without being asked and without me planning anything.

On the surface, our request is a reasonable one.  In reality, you may be setting yourself up for disappointment.  Most men need to be told what you want.  If you know what you want for your birthday, tell them.  If you want to go to a certain place for a weekend, tell them.  Give them the phone numbers of the hotel.  You may have to make the arrangements.  Trust me that when you receive that gift or go on that weekend, the meaning will not be tainted by the fact that you had to tell your man what you need.  This idea that gifts and/or getaways only have meaning when someone else guesses what you want or makes the reservations is a faulty one.

What is important is that your partner showed up. He showed up with that gift.  He showed up on that date.  Start here.  Thank your partner profusely for what he is able to do.  Once he sees your happiness, he will start to do more.

You see, your partner wants your happiness more than anything else in the world.  It may not show everyday, but that is your man’s main goal.

stepmother, step family, blended, divorce, mother, parenting, remarriage
Stepmothers Often Do All the Work

You can test this theory.  Start telling him every time you are happy. Even if you have to do the ‘work’, book that date and tell him how happy you are to be there.  No complaining about how he did nothing.  If you follow this plan, I promise you will see a man who will start to book things. Guaranteed.

3 Responses to Stepmother Lament: He Doesn’t Do Anything for Me!

  1. Thank you for this. It hit the spot for me & gave me renewed strength to try again with a different approach.

  2. Dear Barb thank you for all your trenchant good sense and advice. I have adult step daughters and would like to hear more about the issues faced dealing with adult step children. Thank you again

  3. This hits home. We are newly married. He has three children and their mother is deceased so we have the kids all the time. I love the children but I get this ache when I see him and the kids sometimes and the things he does for them. I desperatly wish we could have that sweet honeymoon period but with everything going on–its just a lot of stress and attempting to get everyone adjusted. I plan any dates–he never even brings up the idea of us having a night together. It seems like too much work just to plan a date and get sitters sometimes. The kids tend to call us…several times…during just the couple hours we are out. I find myself feeling so lonely….like I lost him by marrying him and instead gained the stepmother duties. I wanted a marriage too. I want to SEE his love for me. I have talked to him about planning something but it simply doesnt ever happen. What I would do for some flowers, a compliment, or hell, a surprise date night!!

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