Step children are children not given birth to by the supposed parents either the wife or husband. Children that may be biologically given birth to by either the wife or husband outside the wedlock is referred to as Step-children.

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Step children normally have general difficulty in adjusting to the new family or parent. They feel they may be deprived of the love, care and attention they need from their biological parent. Even step-children whose parent died have more psychological challenge in adjusting in to their new ‘dad’ or ‘mum’. They may feel underrated easily and not accepted at the least trigger. In fact, being a step-child is not a palatable situation. However, step-children should accept the new reality even though it may take some time to do so. Step children should see the new parent(s) as if they are their real biological parent(s) and accord them the necessary respect and cooperation. Generally, step-children who are under 10 years adjust easily to the new family than those above 10 years. This is partly because children under 10 years easily accept new adult, or family that show them care, attention and love unlike children above 10 years or teenagers who scarcely accept new adults and family even if the step-parent may provide attention and their needs. It may sometimes take some time for them to accept new parent and this, step-parents should understand because it is normal. However, the step parents mostly do not show care and affection to their step-children and are therefore prone to ill-treating them.

The step-parents should observe the following if they want to really be ideal step-father or mother ;

  1. The step-children may not easily and immediately accept them as their parents. This means that the step-parent should be patient with the step child and show him or her affection not expecting to be called dad or mum expeditiously. Even sometimes you may not be addressed as such, you should not be angry or bitter about that. Mind you step children know their real parent(s) and that you are not their biological dad or mum.
  2. The step parents should show their step-children genuine affection. Step-parent should not expect their step-children to be very close to them just because they show affection. Time will tell how beautiful the dividend will be.
  3. Never prevent your step child’s biological father or mother from seeing and showing or fulfilling their responsibilities to them. However, a caution should be made clear here that the relationship should not be extended to the ex-wife or husband who came into new marriage with a child or children. This is because some ex-spouse use the reason of fulfilling their parental responsibilities as a bait to get back their ex-spouse and this is a recipe for pandemonium. To prevent this the ex-spouse should especially the one in new marriage should set parameters or new rules or middle ground where all parties must follow gorgeously. The parental relationship should be given boundaries even. However, there should be no agreement whatsoever to establish relationship out of wedlock between the divorcee and the one in new marriage.

In conclusion, prayer should be said for this new situation to be successful by both the step child and parent. I am of the view that if step parents treat their step children as their own, the step children tend to love them more than their own biological parents and easily call them mum or dad.


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