The greatest need of every human being is the need for appreciation.
If you’ve been a stepparent for any length of time, you have found or will find any appreciation or thanks from your stepchildren to be few and far between. Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, anniversaries and birthdays may come and go without any acknowledgment of the event or your contributions. While not to defend their behaviors, remember your stepchildren are lugging their customized emotional baggage into your blended family.
Their failure to show you thanks and appreciation is about them and not about you – the bigger the baggage the less expression of appreciation. With the healing and maturity of your stepchildren, eventually you may receive their thanks and appreciation but don’t expect it. Hopefully, your spouse recognizes you regularly for your contributions to her children.
To cope with the absence of outside appreciation as a stepparent, you will probably need to become your own cheerleader, recognizing and rewarding yourself for the terrific job you are doing. You can help bring healing to your stepchildren by praising and appreciating them whenever possible and in hopes they will learn from your example.
Stepdads and stepmoms you are appreciated because you didn’t have to be one. Become what it is you want. Take time today to share your appreciation with someone today.