The first time I saw the movie, “Step-Mom” I thought Susan Sarandon’s character was such a bitch. She was divorced. Julie Roberts played the much younger girlfriend introduced to the children. Spoiler Alert: Sarandon’s character wasn’t thrilled about Roberts’ character. I wasn’t a mother and I wasn’t divorced. Now, I am both and I get it.We really need to erase the stigma that divorce is a bad thing. It can be the difference between living in heaven or hell. However, with divorce comes many firsts. I am learning that some are joyful, others difficult and a few painful. Introducing a new partner to your children can be tough. It’s awkward. You don’t want to pressure them, but are hopeful they give him a chance. There is no handbook on how to handle this. Every situation is different. Having your children meet your ex’s partner comes with an entirely different range of emotions. You envision the door opening and Cinderfuckingrella standing before them. The earth stops spinning and everything around her sparkles. She doesn’t have as many wrinkles or a FUPA. She will be charming and fun while you have to nag your kids to put their laundry away, do homework, etc. They will go shopping, bake chewy chocolate chip cookies while you do everything else to keep them alive and buy desserts at Aldis. It’s natural to feel a little resentment and fear that you will be replaced, but there is room for the both of you. There has to be. All that you can ask is that she is kind and understanding. Understanding that you worry every time they leave the house. Understanding that you love them so much it physically hurts. Understanding that you just want her to love and protect them like they were her own. You want her to appreciate their humor, intelligence and kind hearts. You hope she realizes how lucky she is to know them. This isn’t a competition because we aren’t in the same race. So, you will never speak ill of her. Let’s be honest, you may think it from time to time, but don’t say it. Well, unless you are talking to that friend.
Then, one day there won’t be anymore firsts. Hopefully, there will be children who feel loved by the both of you. Now, adjust your crown. She isn’t stealing your #1 mom mug. You earned that shit years ago.