I am a step-mother. I hate the term step-mother. Really, how many good step-mothers have you heard about compared to all those “wicked” and “evil” hags that fill stories and movies. For the record, I am actually a damn good step-mother. It does help that our daughter lives with us full time, and I have been “mom” for ten years now.
But still I resent the evil step-mothers in stories. Never have I made a poison apple, locked anyone in the top of the tallest tower, or taken children out into the woods never to return. I admit that I wear a lot of black, but that is more because it is slimming, not because I have an alliance with anything or one unholy.
I give my daughter a lot of the credit however. Very rarely has she ever treated me like less than her mother, only once in anger has she used it towards me. Trust me, she has been angry with me lots, so if she wanted to, she could hurl those words that every step-parent dreads: “you are not my real parent”. The one time that it was used in anger towards me, I think we both were surprised by how much it hurt me. And since then, it has never been even hinted at. This reminds me, that I need to tell her how much I appreciate that. Often we will be meeting people for the first time together and they will tell us how much we look alike, because we both have blonde hair and blue eyes (this is where it ends as she is think as a rail, and I on the other hand, well, I am not). We always sort of look at each other and smile, and she takes the lead and says “funny, because she isn’t my birthmother”. This may seem like a small thing, but to me it is huge.
This means that I am her mom, and that just feels really good.