“And you will never take my mama out again” my 5-year-old boy announced to my date with his little finger-pointing right at his face. This was the first time my son had ever said anything like that to any of my friends. So I never went out with that man again. I figured if my boy didn’t like him then he wasn’t right for us. Next time I went on a date: “My birfday is November de turd and don’t you forget it”…he liked this guy and thought it important to let him know his birthday date even though it was months away. Ron and I began as friends but it soon turned into more. I remember thinking, “This guy is a true gentleman and he is really nice; he’s fun, easy to talk to, and we enjoy so many of the same things”. The best part though was that he loves the Lord. And so began our romance which culminated with us and our two children at the altar. My son was 6 and his daughter was 7. They were so cute as they waited for their cue to walk down the aisle together, arm in arm. We had some premarital counseling but our Pastor did not understand anything about blending families and so it was never mentioned. We just thought it was the same as a first marriage. What a shock when we realized that is just not the case.
Even though my boy liked Ron he was not ready for us to live with him. We were living with my mom, his Grandma, and they were extremely close. My Dad had passed after bringing us home from a very bad marriage. So the three of us just took care of each other. We were so thankful to be together. But like any adult, I wanted my own home, and one day as we were driving back to Mom’s from work and school, I announced to my blond-haired little guy that “One day, we will buy a house, just you and me”. Well, since his mama didn’t lie, he took that to heart and looked forward to us one day getting our home close to Grandma.
When we moved out of Mom’s and into Ron’s, my boy was not a happy camper. It was supposed to be him and me, not anyone else with us. And so he began to reject and resent Ron. The more he rejected Ron, the more firm Ron became. He was going to be honored in his own home and so the cycle began. And I was caught in the middle. The two people who I loved most were not blending. They were at war it seemed at times. When I would try to “smooth things out” I was accused of taking the other one’s side. When it was just Ron and I, it was great. When it was just my boy and me, it was great. When it was the three of us, I felt stressed hoping that nothing would go wrong. When Ron’s daughter came for visitations, it was great because we all had fun together. Ron said when it was just he and our boy, it was great between them. So why, when it was the three of us, was it more difficult?
What I have learned since is that we were stuck in a cycle. The more my son rejected Ron, Ron would sense it so he would become too firm, in my opinion, (he was never abusive) which caused me to jump in to rescue my boy and so it went. My son later told me that he felt that a more powerful “king” had come into his territory and it was his job to overthrow him. My son wanted to break us up! He liked being the only “man” in the house. And so my boy would do what he could, knowingly or otherwise, to disrupt our peaceful home. Sometimes Ron would overreact and sometimes I would. We were trapped in a web that was difficult to break free of. And we didn’t for many years.
But one day, when things had come to a head, it was revealed that my son was actually very angry with me for not getting us our home, like I said I would. I was shocked! It never dawned on me that the seed of his resenting Ron actually came from me. I apologized to my son for not keeping my word to him and asked for forgiveness. He always wanted it to be just him and me, because that’s what I said, so it was difficult to accept anyone else into our family. He and Ron also talked things out and got concerns off of their chests. They apologized to each other and asked for forgiveness. We were finally on our way to healing.