How to Disengage from Your Stepkids (in a Loving Way!) by Maarit at Blended Family Frappé

How to Disengage from Your Stepkids (in a Loving Way!)

A step-by-step guide to take you from frustration & resentment to finally finding stepparenting peace.

Tired of stepparenting never getting easier no matter how hard you try?

Boy have I been there. 🙈

When I met my stepdaughter, I had the best of intentions. And, since I was already a single mom, I thought I had pretty realistic expectations, too.

I was completely unprepared for how hard becoming a stepmom was gonna be.

My stepdaughter wanted nothing to do with me. No matter how hard I tried to win her over, she just pushed me further away. All the stepparenting books I read gave worthless advice ranging from "Just express an interest in what your stepkid enjoys and they'll warm right up!" to "Aw don't take it personally." 🙄

Was I the worst stepmom in the WORLD that I couldn't help but take this personally??

That's when I found the Disengaging Essay

What the Disengaging Essay DIDN'T tell me

I stepped back like the essay suggested, but I didn't really understand the right way to disengage. My stepdaughter got the message that I didn't care. So then I felt like a jerk on top of feeling even more like an outsider in my own family. 😬

I tried to learn more about disengaging from stepkids, but resources were few & far between, and most of them sounded like they'd been written by super bitter stepmoms who mega hated their stepkids. Meanwhile, I still felt completely miserable in my own home, like I was never going to figure out this whole stepparenting gig.

Then one day I was reading a book that talked about the Buddhist principle of non-attachment and a lightbulb went on.

OHHHHhhhhh!! So THIS is what the essay was trying to say!! 🤩

The RIGHT way to disengage from your stepkids

I started researching like a woman obsessed. (Uh.. I mean, because I was a woman obsessed.)

As I started implementing the new aspects of disengaging I learned, our blended family started turning around.

My stepdaughter used to leave the room when I walked in. But now we could have conversations. I used to hide in our bedroom because I didn't want to ruin her weekends with us. Now I didn't feel like I had to hide anymore... but I didn't feel guilty on those times I decided not to join in, either. I started feeling less like a wicked stepmonster and more like a normal human again. 💕

Over time, I began sharing the tips I learned with other stepparents, and got to hear their success stories.

And now, I've assembled everything I learned into this course: How to Disengage from Your Stepkids (in a Loving Way!).

What this course covers

Together in this course, we'll walk through:
  • What disengaging really is.. .and what it isn't. (Hint: it's not "mean" & doesn't mean you don't care)
  • Whether disengaging is the right answer for you 
  • Why so many stepparents find themselves stuck in the exact same place that you're in right now—and why none of us talks about it 🤐
  • How stepping back can actually improve your relationship with your stepkid (and your partner!)
We'll go over the most common problems stepparents face as they begin the disengaging process, and I'll share some solutions to help. I'll also explain the two critical components needed to successfully disengage in a loving way. 🤗

The core of the course is to learn an objective, repeatable disengaging process—a process that you can adapt as needed to real life. 

And maybe most importantly, we'll wrap everything up by talking about how to NOT get sucked back into this place ever ever ever again. 🙌🏼🎉

What's included?

Video Icon 10 videos File Icon 3 files

Contents

Welcome!
Hellooooo! [said in Mrs. Doubtfire's voice]
5 mins
Module 1: Is Disengaging the Right Answer?
Should you disengage from your stepkid?
11 mins
Module 2: Understanding the Dynamics at Play
How did we get here?
10 mins
Module 3: The Disengaging Process
2 keys to successfully disengage
6 mins
Identifying your contributions
3 mins
Contributions Worksheet
32.1 KB
Let's vent!
1 min
Venting Worksheet
29.2 KB
Let it goooo, let it gooooo
11 mins
Disengaging Flowchart
61.6 KB
What to expect as you disengage
3 mins
Module 4: Common Problems with Disengaging
Disengaging IRL
7 mins
Module 5: Staying Disengaged
You've found stepparenting peace. Now how do you hang onto it?
5 mins

FAQ

Isn't disengaging kind of mean? It sounds passive-aggressive.

The term "disengaging" has been used way too often as an excuse for being both mean AND passive-aggressive! But done the right way, disengaging comes from a loving place: doing what's right for you, the stepparent, as well as what's best for your marriage and your stepkids.  

I think I'd feel guilty if I disengaged. Shouldn't I be helping my partner parent?

Not if taking on a parenting role increases friction within your household. If the status quo isn't working, it's time to change things up. If your partner supported your efforts to parent, you wouldn't be here, right? And if they're not supporting your efforts to parent, then it's time to step back from parenting and let them step up.  

Won't disengaging make my stepkids think I don't like them?

Disengaging in a loving way is about your own self-care and establishing healthy boundaries for yourself, not giving your stepkids the cold shoulder or ignoring them. 

If I disengage, who's gonna keep the kitchen clean/make the kids pick up after themselves/[insert chore here]? I don't want the house to get disgusting.

Well I mean hopefully your partner cares about you feeling exhausted and unappreciated, and they want to help work out a better situation that benefits the whole family and the house you all share. Right? Because clearly the way things are going right now isn't working so hot, or you wouldn't be here looking at this course. ;) 

How can I possibly disengage when I'm a full-time stepparent?

Disengaging is possible no matter how often (or how little) you have the kids. The key is finding a way for you to feel supported in your role as a stepparent so you don't end up burned out, frustrated, or resentful. Disengaging from your stepkids can be a way to accomplish that. 

What if I take the course but it doesn't work?

My goal is to help you feel better in your stepparenting role, so if you genuinely feel the course didn't help you, I'll give you a full refund. Just email me your completed homework within 30 days of purchasing the course, along with a note about why you're still struggling, and we'll take it from there. 

Blended Family Frappé

Helping stepparents find some kinda zen.
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