So you're moving into that gray zone known politely as "stepparenting." I certainly don't know how that term originated. I'm sure that I'm in good company when I say that sometimes it feels more like walking a tightrope or standing on your head in frustration.
Suddenly, you are in this odd position with another woman's child. Well it certainly is not easy for anyone that I know. And here, in no particular order are confessions of stepmoms. And yes, I too am a stepmom.
1. We secretly hope that we are more attractive than the biological mother while secretly fearing that she is both a knockout and an accomplished genius.
2. We fear that our new husbands will always have a special place in their hearts for the mother of their children and we wonder if we are simply "sloppy seconds."
3. When the step-kids act out we fear that they are trying to bring the parents back together and yes we hyperventilate at times.
4. We are ecstatic when the ex-wives get a new partner. We no longer have to worry that she is "a lady-in-waiting" waiting for our husbands to be free again.
5. And yes, we do have visual images of them having sex and we are right in keeping these thoughts to ourselves and moving on to a more pleasant image.
Barbara Greenberg and Jennifer Powell-Lunder are authors of the hit book, "Teenage as a Second Language: A Parent's Guide to Becoming Bilingual." They've set up an interactive website for parents and teens to listen, learn and discuss hot topics and daily dilemmas. You can find it at www.talkingteenage.com.