Being a step-dad

Amber

Here is my step daughter, Amber.  She was six years old when my wife and I got together.

Amber

If someone were to ask me what I thought about having a step daughter I probably would have answered, "I hate pleats." That's because all the schools here in Belize use uniforms and since Amber has become my step-daughter, I've spent many tired mornings ironing her uniform for school.

Being a step-dad

On this blog and on my Twitter page I am quoted as a first-time dad even though Amber became my step-daughter several months before we became pregnant with Squirt. However, for me, the experience was different–with Amber, a lot of the parenting was already done by her Mom. It was tough trying to impress my idea of parenting upon her, I had to learn how things had been done between parent and child in their family. With Squirt, my first son, I was learning to be a dad from the very beginning of the process and still learning today for that matter.

Now that I'm in the picture with Amber I get to deal with all the joys of a pre-teen girl–puberty, rebellion, boys, eventually dating and sex (cringe). Also, her entrance into things like email, Twitter and Facebook. Just the other day we were contemplating buying her first cell phone, but I'm still on the hunt for one that can restrict texts as well as calls (not sure if that is possible). On the other hand, it looks like she is starting geometry at school which was one of my favorite classes. My wife wants her to attend the same prestigious high school she attended so we have to encourage her to keep her grades up, she was actually first in her class last term and has been since she entered school.

So right now fatherhood for me is like two completely different worlds. On the one hand I am having fun discovering things all over again with my two year old son and on the other hand, I have to help ensure that we are raising a responsible, well-rounded young woman. I guess it's not all that unusual but its all uncharted territory for me, so I still really am a first-time dad.

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