Not feeling any love with my stepmom - FamilyEducation
Not feeling any love with my stepmom
03/22/2008 at 11:42 AM

Hello Reader,
okay, I'm a 14yr old girl who is in the 9th grade and homeschooled. Ok i have a little problem well one day i let my step mom use my calculator and she didn't give it back well the next day when i was doing school i had to use it so i looked in her room for it because thats where she keeps everything so i looked in her drawer well when i looked in her drawer i found this notebook lookin thing that turned out to be jounral wel i didn't know it was her jounral until i started reading it well i read things that could tear this family apart in a spilt second. My father has two WONDERFUL kids from my stepmom that i really do love. Well my stepmom is always tryin to leave me out the picture and i know that i don't need something everytime they get something because i can understand that a 6yr old and a 4yr old is gonna need more then a 14yr old because they grow faster than we do but i do need every once in a while right?? Well as a 14yr old girl what should i do to make this family love eachother?

The first thing I think is that it would be good if you could pretend that whatever you read was just fiction.  Pretend like it is all just a dramatic story that your step-mom wrote  to get things out of her head, and then just let it go.  Sometimes people use journals and diaries to help them to cope with what is going on, and they exaggerate and it is not like a record that you have to be honest when you write in it, like it would be for work or for the court or something.  Unless the things are things that put your dad or anybody else in the family in physical danger, I think it would be good to forget about it. Current illegal drug use or risky sexual behavior  you would need to talk to your dad, but have your step-mom right there with you if that is what you need to do, don't go behind her back.

  I don't know what would help you cope with other things.  If you are fourteen, you are probably able to take care of yourself and of your own laundry and lunches and things like that.    As each of my kids has turned 14, I have given them control of their own life, along with all the consequences.  If they mess up, I don't bail them out.  If they want to do something special, they have to earn my permission because I still have legal responsibility for them.  For example, my boy who is 17 wants to go to a concert with a friend of his.  He had been getting bad grades in school because he wasn't turning some things in on time.  Well, for the last 2 months he has been turning things in because he knows that I would be happy to tell his friend that he can't go to the concert because he lost the privilege. 

   I also expect them to keep their rooms tidy, and I expect help with dinner and keeping the house tidy, about 15 or 20 minutes of work most days, unless they have something special, like a concert for school or an athletic event.  It makes a HUGE difference to whoever is managing the house if people will pitch in without being asked to.

  Maybe you could try to develop a friendship with your step-mom that is not about what you need.  See if she will teach you about something that she really loves to do.  Or volunteer to watch the little kids so she can have some down-time. 


First of all, hiding your head in the sand and pretending that you did not read the journal is neither realistic, nor healthy. The world, as well as your stepmother may not always have the opinion of you that you would hope. I grew up with a stepmother as well and fell pretty safe in guessing that you probably have not always had wonderful thoughts of your stepmother. The difference between you and her is that she wrote her thoughts down and you were able to read them. I should also add that her thoughts are hers, and you probably have a different take on what she wrote. Journals are one sided, and usually side with the author.

If you go through life worrying about how others view you, you start to lose focus on your true feelings, and desires. There is an old saying that goes “Greater is he that is in me, than he that is in the world”. I had a discussion just yesterday with my son, and told him this very thing. If movie producers worried about what critics would say, Hollywood would be in trouble. Ever notice when a movie comes out that there are critics that love it and critics that hate it? People are the same way, what I value in one person, someone else may criticize them for. This is not worth worrying about.

Finally, it is not your responsibility to make your family love each other. Your family is the same now as it was before you read the journal. The only thing that has changed is that you know a bit more than you did. My advice would not be to forget it, but forgive it, and move on. I would also advise against reading other peoples journals. As my Grandmother used to say “Eavesdroppers never hear good of themselves”. Good luck to you.


Gail, I have asked to do things like that but still NOTHING I will just advice from adults anyways cuz i kno you've all been there right? Thanks for the advice! your friend, winterlylove37

Sngldad, yea, i understand but i dont understand is how I said "I didn't Kno it was a journal untill i started to read the ending." but thanks for everything any more adivce would help! THANKS! your friend, winterlylove37

Well, I guess I see a couple things here.  Does your step-mother know you were in her room?  And One thing I feel uncomfortable with is that you knew that notebook looking thing wasn't a calucator.  So I feel some privacy issues here.  OK, past that.  I myself as I'm sure many people has a journal.  And it is things that I write down to get frusrations out, hurt feelings, thoughts that I'm not sure of. And then when I get them out on paper go back and read them a few days later, at times I think to myself... "why was I thinking that???""  But we have to get things, thoughts, feeling out of our heads because if we don't we feel like we might explosed!  I think that you need to think of it like that, and but NO MORE thought to it!  You read it and now forget it.  If it was something you read that could be dangerous then maybe say something like, murder sucuide, and harm to herself or others... but this is no harm.  I'm sure you have possible done the same maybe about a friend.  You write something down to get it out and then everything is ok.  Hang in there.  She loves you and it sounds to me that you have a good family blend, better than some.  Hang in there

I know what you mean Jenni. If I have a particularly bad day or big problem, I tend to sit and write all my feelings down. I find it good therapy to get it all out. As you say, the next day or whenever the problem is resolved, I sometimes can't believe quite what I have written down and know that it was not the real me talking.

exactly!  Because you got to vent about say the kidos and you can't to the spouse because he'll take it the wrong way

winterlylo, listen to what jenni is writing... it's all true, and what gail wrote.  journals are for all sorts of things, but for us adults its usually a place to write down thoughts, feelings - all sorts of feelings and what may have happened during the day.  us step moms are trying to blend in with you, the step kids, and sometimes it can be difficult since we came from different places, had different boundaries, rules, etc.  hang in there and use this experience as a learning lesson.   would you want your step mom to read this something or other that was in your drawer?  if you know you are trying to help out and be an active part of the family in a positive way, then you are doing the right thing.  maybe ask your step mom what's wrong. let her know you too are her friend.  otherwise, keep on being you and a wonderful 14 yr old, and enjoy.  


It seems you are trying to promote harmony in your family if you are brave enough to post an honest recount of reading your step mom's journal. That was a smart move and I think you got some good advice. 

I hope you understand now that what you did was a mistake.  Take the advice you have gotten here and use your power to help create a peacful environment for you and your family.  Some kids don't recognize how much power they actually have in a family.  It's kinda like spiderman, with power comes responsibility.


Good luck!!