Families come in all shapes and sizes

When I was growing up I often thought of family as being made up of a mum, dad and two children. Of course you’d have your grandparents as well. Mums parents, dads parents and in addition any sisters or brothers they have being aunts and uncles.

That was pretty much it in my opinion.

The thought of step-mums and step-siblings was never a thought that entered my mind because my family was made up mum, dad, my sister and I. It was that simple.

I thought that when I grew up, I too would have the same family unit. A nuclear family if you will, two parents and two children.

I never would have imagined that I’d end up with someone who had children already, and I would never have imagined that my children would have ready made siblings. Albeit step-siblings, but siblings all the same.

However, I have to say that being an unconventional family is the best thing that’s ever happened.

I met my husband when I was 18 years old. He’d been married before and had three children from that marriage.

Becoming a step-mum at the age of 20 wasn’t on the agenda growing up, and although I use the term step-mum, I don’t see myself as their step-mum, but I do refer to them as my step-children, rather than my husbands children. I see myself as their friend, and I hope they feel the same way about me!

It certainly wasn’t easy in the early days. Obviously they saw me as someone who was with their dad, yet wasn’t their mum.

It must have been incredibly hard for them when their parents split up, and even harder when I came on the scene, but it was also hard for me. Being around three young children who I knew nothing about was tough. I worried if they’d like me, if I’d like them, what we’d talk about etc, but thankfully, everything has worked out well and I adore all three of them. That’s not to say it was easy. We’ve certainly had our moments, but that’s normal for most families I imagine. What’s important is that we all get along and we’re all there for one another.

What’s even more amazing, and important is that my children have three wonderful siblings, and that’s something that I and they truly treasure.

I don’t have a big family. It’s basically just my sister, her husband and children, so knowing that my children have three siblings as well, is pretty amazing.

I love to watch them all together. Their bond is so unique and it’s clear to see that R and M absolutely adore their older siblings!

So, family to me isn’t your standard two parents and two children. It’s so much more than that and I wouldn’t change it for the world!



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