I’m in a very large Stepmom Support Group on social media that has over 15,000 members. One of the theories and concepts that’s been tossed around often in that Group is the NACHO KID method of step-parenting. That is definitely a controversial topic with many stepmoms in full support of and many stepmoms completely against The Nacho Method.
I firmly believe that in this season, people get way too offended by words and terms that really aren’t meant to be offensive or personal. For example, I’m a middle of the road Nacho Stepmom. I will handle certain things with my stepkids but other things I won’t touch with a ten foot pole for my own protection such as discipline. I told someone in the large group the other day that “I provide child care services to my stepchildren for my husband” and that person was just furious over the term “child care” because I’m a stepparent and that’s still a parent by golly and if I wouldn’t provide child care to my own kids how dare I call it child care when it’s for my stepkids. Y’all…. as far as I’m concerned, if the term “child care” bothers you, just keep scrolling and move on with your life. Thankfully, there are MANY stepparents that understand the concept, what I meant by it, are not offended by it, and feel a little better and supported that they are not alone in that.
So, what do I mean by providing child care services? I mean, when I am alone with my stepchildren, I care for them as I would a niece or nephew. I make sure they did their homework, prepare their meals, make sure they shower, watch movies, joke around, etc. However, when something happens that needs parental oversight or parental discipline, I DO NOT handle it. I notify my spouse of what he needs to know and HE handles it. For the most part, he and I have already created a list of boundaries and guidelines that we follow with all of our kids regardless of who they belong to. But when there is an infraction and it involves my stepchildren, I allow my husband to handle and enforce that whereas with my own biological children I would just handle it myself. I do some other things differently also in that I do not stay in the bedroom or bathroom with a stepchild when they are changing or nude (they are all old enough to bathe themselves so that’s not an issue) whereas with my bio kids I would stay in the room but turn around. It’s subtle but it’s different. And personally I think some stepparents may be a little naive if they don’t take any extra measures to protect themselves especially if there is a high conflict ex or history of litigation. I firmly believe that you can never be too safe.
Another slight difference that I’ve noticed with my bio kids versus my step kids is the use of Family Group text messages. With my bio kids I often send a quick private text whereas with my stepkids, I am certain 99% of the time to be sure to put all of my communications with my stepkids in the group text so that their biological parent (my husband) is fully aware of anything that I have relayed to the child. I’ve found that it also helps keep us all informed and on the same page so that “you didn’t tell me about that” or “I didn’t know about that” stays kept to a minimum and I can say it was posted in the family group text.
Y’all, these differences really are not personal and is simply for communication improvement and for my own protection as a stepparent.
So yes, I’m going to continue to provide “child care services” to my stepchildren even if that offends a good portion of the stepparent group because, after all, isn’t everyone offended in our society by something anyway 😉
Coffee cheers to you all.