Where to begin….
To start with a little information about myself, I am a father of 6 (5 biological & 1 Stepchild) on my second marriage. My first marriage of 9 years failed after having 3 kids. And to be honest, it was a marriage that should have never been. A marriage I went into due to the birth of my first and second child. I cared about the mother of my first two, but it was never on the level where marriage should have ever happened. Ultimately I wanted my kids to have a father in their lives after I grew up in a divided family and ultimately felt like I never had that father figure. Right after becoming married, I felt guilty. I felt as it was a mistake. But I wanted to do right for all who was involved so I attempted to just deal with it, as they say. Halfway into the marriage, my 3rd Child was born, in half attempt of gaining a daughter, and another attempt to possibly make the marriage better?!? After giving birth to my daughter, I realized I would never be able to show my kids a true marriage. To mostly show an example to my daughter what a husband should be like. In the fear of giving a bad example, I chose to leave my marriage. At that time I talked with my kids and their mother so everyone would understand the best they could at that moment, and hopefully fully understand when years have passed and knowledge gained.
Fast Forward to the divorce…..
The divorce was pretty smooth. No issues, no fights, no major disagreements. Both myself and my children’s mother understood that what mattered the most was that the kids were taken care of and would continue having their mother and father although they wouldn’t be living together no more. During the divorce, I unexpectedly met someone that almost seemed unavoidable (and no, it wasn’t the reason or cause of my divorce as much as it may appear). After my divorce was finalized, I began to have a relationship with the woman I unexpectedly met. That relationship was truly one of a kind. The kind that one would say seems too good to be true. I ended up falling in love with her, falling hard, and I felt that the feeling was mutual! That woman would also have 1 daughter of her own that she had raised by herself due to the father not being present. When I initially met her, we were both upfront and honest on each others life situations and were aware of each others children. Eventually all the kids would meet each other and meet each parent. Again, everything just seemed to good to be true. Everyone got along, everyone liked each other. I couldn’t believe the ease of everything after hearing stories of others who had relationships with someone and having kids involved.
Changes began to happen….
The following year it was discussed and decided upon that we could imagine forming a family together. Getting married and Having a family together, and possibly expanding our family with the addition of another child. I realized at that moment what it was like to actually want to marry someone. What it was like to be truly in love! To be open with someone and have someone feel for me the same way I felt about them. So I proposed, and of course she said yes!!! Shortly after we gained the news that we were to have our first child together. We bought a house moved in together and got married. It all happened pretty quick, but it happened just as we talked and dreamt about. Plans were made and understood. Schedules were discussed and agreed. We knew having multiple kids would be difficult. But having the living arrangements where we would have her daughter live with us and then my three children would come stay with us 6 days every two weeks, we felt it was very manageable. We both worked so we were financially stable. And again, all of the kids got along great! Even after we got married, we took our first successful family vacation! All this time, even though it was short, a lot of changes and no issues including no arguments whatsoever!
Later that year is when the real changes began to happen….
Our first child was born. It was another girl! Even though I’ve had 3 other kids and my wife had 1 other, this one felt a little different. It was a child birthed in a loving marriage that was planned and desires very much so! After our daughter was born, my wife began to have issues regarding my 3 children from my first marriage. She felt it was too difficult to have them stay with us for as many days as they did. So after discussion it was decided and agreed that we would adjust the amount of days that would work best for both of us. But shortly after the adjustments it still seemed and was reiterated that my wife just had a disliking for my first 3 children. Believing it was normal to have certain feelings or thoughts for stepchildren I never looked to much into it. But that’s where I went wrong. I never noticed that she still would never and had never even acknowledge them as her stepchildren, only as “your kids” being from my first marriage. Trying to make her happy, I continued with making small adjustments where it would address her concerns and wouldn’t put any further strain or complications on our family. I admit, even I began to have issues with her first child. Although it never got to the point where I didn’t want her around or wished for drastic changes. My issues were more of the bringing up of, or how spoiled and entitled her daughter was becoming. But I had the understanding that for a long time she was an only child, and was being raised only by her mother. So all of these changes would affect her differently the most.
Time had passed and then we got another blessing of being granted with our second child together! And this time again it seemed that as we gained another child, it would only cause my wife to state how she did not like any of “my kids” and “my kids” only caused issues for us. Whether they were financial issues or argumentative issues, just constant issues stemming from them and only them. There were even times she would bring up divorce due to the fact of not wanting to be around “my kids”.
Our second “family vacation” was being planned and it was the first time where my wife said she did not want to have my 3 children join us. Only her child and our baby we just had could go. Again, another moment I felt like I was blinded and should have been more aware of the appearance that was given off by my wife. It was to the point of being told she didn’t want her first daughter to have to miss out on doing things because we would have to spend the extra money on the extra kids. It was also made out that the more kids would cause me and her to have less time together. It was also argued that my kids were able to do things with their mother so it wasn’t fair for them to do more then her daughter. Eventually we came to somewhat of an agreement where some trips taken would be with everyone and others would only be with some. I only tried to look at the big picture for everyone so no one would feel less important or feel left out. To my knowledge I was the only one that would actually think about everyone and not only a select few.
More changes, More issues…
Moving forward there would always seem like some adjustment needed to be made to make my wife happy involving my first three kids. If I was to work overnight, my 3 year old could not be at our home alone with my wife, being told it was too much for her with a newborn and her being pregnant. Trying to ease the stress I agreed and had made arrangements where my 3 year old would stay with her grandmother when I had to work. Time had passed and it seemed like we finally had made arrangements that would please all. In reality though, I began having further issues regarding her first daughter, as she was able to do what she wanted, when she wanted, how she wanted regardless of how I may have felt. It appeared that some concerns of feelings I had that was once addressed were shoved to the side for the happiness of her daughter. Due to me feeling like I had to constantly give regarding my first three kids just for her to take regarding her first kid. Yet regardless of how I may have felt about her first child, I would never could never have her be left out of anything. The annoyances I had ultimately was toward my wife due to what she allowed her to do knowing how I felt about the certain things. It was even to a point where I felt like I lost my privacy and even my time with my wife that we once always made sure to give each other! Ironically when that simple issue was attempted to be address in regards to a 12 year old (her first child) being able barge into our room unannounced, uninvited, without permission. Yet my 3 year old would do the same, and I would attempt to correct the issue and talk to her so she would understand what’s expected. But due to the 3 year old still doing against what’s told, my wife felt like she shouldn’t have to tell her daughter to do what I wished and I had no grounds to be upset. It grew into a point where any issue I may have involving her daughter, would only cause an argument. My wife would come defensive and bring related or even unrelated issues involving my other 3 kids to state I have no ability of having the issues I do.
Onto the present…
Time continued moving forward and we gave birth to our second child. At this point and time my wife has made it known that she does not like any of my 3 children I had prior to her. Comments are made from my wife stating she feels as she doesn’t have to “invite” my other three kids to all family events or “invite” them to all holiday gatherings. If I wanted to spend time with my kids, I could go do that, but i couldn’t simply spend time with all of my kids doing something all together. With her saying that, it finally hit me. It was past just not liking or past simply being stressed or overwhelmed about my 3 kids prior to her. If she could go with never having to be around them, she would, regardless if that meant losing out on time with me or time I could have with all of the kids! My kids would never become something as simple as her step kids.
Now if my 3 kids aren’t around, her love is genuine. She is just as she was when we first met. She is great!
So I sit here and wonder, is this normal? Is this what all blended families go through? In order to be with the one I love so much I have to give up what is impossible to give. I love my kids, all 6 of them. As much as I couldn’t imagine life without my wife, I can’t imagine life without any of my kids either….