A New Look at Why Real Stepmothers Think, Feel, and Act the Way We DoBook - 2009
An honest and groundbreaking guide to understanding the complicated emotions that develop between stepmothers and children.
When faced with often overwhelming challenges, what woman with stepchildren is unfamiliar with that "stepmonster" feeling? Half of all women in the United States will live with or marry a man with children. To guide women new to this role--and empower those who are struggling with it--Wednesday Martin draws upon her own experience as a stepmother. She's frank about the harrowing process of becoming a stepmother, she considers the myths and realities of being married to aman with children, and she counteracts the cultural notion that stepmothers are solely responsible for the problems that often develop. Along the way, she interviews other stepmothers and stepchildren and offers up fascinating insights from literature, anthropology, psychology, and evolutionary biology that explain the little-understood realities of this unique parent-child relationship and--in an unexpected twist--shows why the myth of the Wicked Stepmother is the single best tool for understanding who real stepmothers are and how they feel.
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“In a number of instances, I was taken by surprise by how "stuck" many of the otherwise emotionally mature and high-functioning adults I interviewed seemed and the vehemence with which they sometimes expressed their disapproval of their fathers' unions with, as one woman in her thirties put it, "Dad's wife, or what ever she is." The lack of ease in relationships with stepchildren in their thirties and forties...can come as a particular and exasperating disappointment. Perhaps this is why many women with adult stepchildren told me of feeling "used up."
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