Brushing her hair behind her ear, she stared into her cup of tea fighting back tears.
I understood. I get it.
"At the very least, it's ok to ask your spouse to do two things... One- He needs to insist on respect from them toward you... this is a no brainer. It's a basic human decency. They don't have to love you, call you mom, or go the mall or coffee with you... just basic human respect. Two- they need to abide by the law... law of the land and agreed laws of your home."
I thought back to a time when I learned that one of my step kids had been smoking pot with their friends in OUR home... I was appalled to learn that parents came to MY house to pick up children because of it... I didn't know it was happening because I was very hands off...I'd turned a blind eye and given up hope of respect of me or rules I had so I left it to their bio-parents. I'd never been so humiliated in my life.... and then there was no consequence... My kids reeled as they KNEW I would've thrown them into rehab or called the police myself had it been them breaking the law. It caused severe division in our marriage and within our home.
Two very important things we learned. You can't make a family blend, but as a parent you NEED to have boundaries. God has boundaries. God also extends grace, mercy and forgiveness, but He has boundaries and there are consequences when they are compromised.
Our homes should be no different.
Set some healthy boundaries. Give your kids an opportunity to help and speak to them(especially if the "laws of the land" have changed- or are different from the other home...a challenge we also faced). Allow them their say, but make sure they know that you will take it into consideration, but ultimately the end decisions are between you and your spouse.
Giving everyone a voice-to a point- helps create a community within your home. This way- everyone has a voice- even a step mom... or step dad.