There is nothing worse for a stepmum than admitting she is jealous. But guess what, it is actually totally normal. It isn't a nice emotion to feel, or even admit you are feeling, but in stepfamilies, it is very common.
I am going to hold my hands up and admit that in the past, YES, I have been jealous.
I have had to work through excruciating feelings that I couldn't even put into words, so I want to reassure you, that you aren't alone.
It is so hard to admit that you are feeling jealous, but that is the actual first step to overcoming the issue. That is the first step to healing anything in life for that matter, holding your hands up, and saying you know what, I am jealous.
BUT, being jealous doesn't make you a bad stepmum/wife/human being. It just means you are experiencing common emotions that come as part of the stepmother bundle.
If you spoke to any ex-wife/husband or child who has a stepparent, I would make a guess that they too at times, have felt jealous of another person in their stepfamily.
It is a reminder that yes we are experiencing these not very nice emotions, but so too are our stepchildren and the ex potentially. We may think we are the only one feeling the green eyed monster, but if we put ourselves in our stepkids or the ex's shoes for a moment, we would realise that they too are feeling emotions that they might not want to speak up about.
So if you are feeling jealousy, or any other kind of negative emotion, first of all, be kind on yourself.
I PROMISE YOU THAT IT ISN'T JUST YOU WHO GETS JEALOUS
There are SO many things a stepmum could be jealous over, and it is all very common.
You may be:
Wow, the list could go on, but I am sure you get the point. There is a lot to be jealous over!!!
So how do you start to overcome it?
1) GET HONEST ABOUT YOUR JEALOUSY
So that you can move forwards, I think it is always best to admit that you are feeling jealous.
I personally spoke to my husband about it, and I also worked with a coach myself in the early days. I have never been one to hide my feelings, so I was really honest about my jealousy, and what exactly I was jealous about.
So what you are you jealous about, and why? Or who are you jealous of, and why?
2) REALISE THAT YOUR JEALOUSY IS SHOWING YOU WHAT YOU NEED TO WORK ON OR HEAL
What is really coming up here? Is it self-worth or insecurity issues? Do you need to remember to love yourself more, and know your value?
What are the triggers that you can work on?
Do you need stop doing everything for everyone, whilst forgetting your own needs?
What is the REAL reason you feel so bad?
You are going to need to do a little digging, to unpick this.
Is it from your childhood? Are there still issues there that you need to work on?
I know if my mum ever read this, she would think I am silly, but my own personal jealousy sprung from me being insanely jealous of my sister growing up.
When I finally worked on that, I noticed that I didn't feel as jealous in my own personal current situation.
3) STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS
What you may be jealous of, may not even exist. You may be looking at another person thinking that they are all happy, when in fact, they also have their own jealousy issues.
Maybe even with you?
Do you really want another person's life? Are you really jealous of your husband's past? This isn't being horrible, but it did end it divorce. Is that something that is better than what you have now?
If an ex is reading this, and ever feel jealous of the stepmum, remember I am writing this blog post, so I promise you, the stepmums life is not perfect or struggle free either!
If you keep comparing yourself to others, you can't create your own life. Please don't waste precious time and energy, wishing things were different or being jealous. You are worth so much more than that.
4) TAKE THE FOCUS BACK TO THE COUPLE
If you have worked on yourself, now is the time to remind yourself that the marriage is always a priority. If there is jealousy, it is also an indicator that the couple need to strengthen their relationship.
The marriage must always be the focus, which may sound counter intuitive, but when the couple thrives, so do the kids. This obviously doesn't mean neglecting the kids, it just means that the husband and wife, should put each others needs and feelings first.
You need to make quality time for your partner in a stepfamily, otherwise jealousy and resentment issues are going to come up.
It can be a bit of a learning curve and balancing act, and you may feel selfish at first, but in the long run, it really is going to be the best for everyone.
When the couple is strong, they can deal with whatever comes their way. You won't feel jealous of the ex, if your needs are put first. Your partner always needs to have your back.
Jealousy is very common, but it is completely solvable. A lot of what you feel as a stepmum can be figured out. Work on you, put your marriage first, and KNOW you have nothing to be jealous about.
You are perfect and amazing. You can handle this. It may be a bit of a ride, but you are stronger and wiser than you think.