OFFICIAL BLOG

Fieldnotes

Bad Stepmother: Stepmother Secrets and Lies

Published by Wednesday Martin

As a mother, I've felt tremendous relief and validation as writers (whether they're blogging or publishing in traditional print media) have recently blown the lid off the secrets lives and feelings of mommies. They have all my gratitude and respect for letting the cat out of the bag regarding the aspects of motherhood that were not spoken of much until recently. Like how mind-numbingly dull it can be sometimes to keep up your end of a conversation with a five-year-old, how infuriating it is to sunblock a toddler, and how you're ready for a drink (or at least a massage) by 10 a.m. some days.


Presumed Guilty

Published by Wednesday Martin

Recently, after getting some great national publicity — and some notably nasty blowback from a few adult stepchildren and women whose husbands had divorced them and then remarried — I was trying to figure out why our society's suspicion of and anger toward women with stepkids runs so deep.


Why you shouldn't put his kids first

Published by Wednesday Martin

One of the biggest points of confusion and controversy as I talk to people about Stepmonster and stepmother reality is the injunction, "Put the kids first" and "The kids should always come first" and other variations on this theme. It's become a virtual mantra since Constance Ahrons introduced the idea of "The Good Divorce" and highly cooperative co-parenting after a breakup as ideal for the kids. The members of the ex-couple, Mom and Dad, should put their differences aside, Ahrons urges, for the sake of a more harmonious "bi-nuclear family" or divorced family that spans two households. This will spare the kids from ugly, painful loyalty binds and help with their adjustment to the shattering of family life as they knew it.


Jealous Much?

Published by Wednesday Martin

There's no emotion more taboo for a woman with stepchildren to admit to feeling (let alone actually express) than jealousy. And there's no more potent stereotype than a green-eyed stepmonster. Who wants to be that ugly cliche? No one. And so we bend over backwards, many of us, and protest too much, insisting that we would never, ever, ever Feel Like That.


Thanks for your responses...

Published by Wednesday Martin

Thank you to those who emailed me about having physically violent stepchildren. I plan to send out questionnaires to all who email me expressing interest in participating in my research on the topic. If I am slow to respond, it is only because of the overwhelming number of emails I am receiving. Please be patient as I really do want to know about your experiences, and will do my best to be in touch a week or two after receiving your email.


Tell Me About It...

Published by Wednesday Martin

If you are a woman with stepchildren who has experienced physical violence in your household at the hands of your stepchild or adult stepchild, or know someone who is, I would like to hear from you for research purposes. I also encourage you to find support so that you can feel and be safe in your home.


Push Comes to Shove: When Stepchildren Get Violent

Published by Wednesday Martin

While researching my book Stepmonster, I interviewed a number of women from all walks of life who described being on the receiving end of aggressive and even violent behavior from teenage and young adult stepchildren. They described not just nasty verbal attacks but shoves, pushes, and in more than one cases, slaps and punches, usually in the context of a "showdown" when the stepmother demanded better treatment or an end to disrespectful behavior, asserting herself as an adult authority in the household. In many instances, the woman's husband or partner was actually in the home (but not in the room) when her stepchild got physical with her. These women were not describing protracted altercations, and were not in serial heated disputes with stepchildren; nor had anyone who described it to me ever been physically violent with a stepchild or child herself. In short, none of these women had a history of being physically violent or in physically violent relationships. And none of them were "mixing it up" with stepkids on a regular basis in any way or returning the shoves, pushes, and more. These blows came out of the blue, in a charged situation, shocking and humiliating them.


Stepmonster Podcast with Jacque Fletcher

Published by Wednesday Martin

Jacque Fletcher, author of the readable, quotable, and supremely helpful A Career Girl's Guide to Becoming a Stepmom, has recently started a podcast series on her fabulous website, www.becomingastepmom.com. I was honored to be her first guest. As a couple of women with stepchildren who had written books about the experience and about stepmother reality, we had a lot to talk about. Have a listen sometime when you have an hour to kill...
http://becomingastepmom.wordpress.com/radio-show/


Shauna Sand, Playboy Model and Stepmother = Phaedra

Published by Wednesday Martin

You didn't think I was going to ignore this, did you? Soap and Falcon Crest actor Lorenzo Lamas is apparently doing some advance p.r. for his upcoming reality show. And so he has dropped the bomb via Star: his ex-wife, Shauna Sand, allegedly had an affair with his son, A.J., back in 2002, while she was married to him (Lamas, that is). And that's why he (Lamas) dumped her and why his relationship with his son remains, to this day, strained.