Dad’s Partner: What I’ve Learned and Where I’ve Learned It

Welcome to Week 3 of my series about Dad’s Partner.  If you missed weeks 1 and 2, you can catch up here and here.  I think this will be my final post in the series (unless I think of something else for next week… which I might… cuz I’m always thinking…) I’d like to sum this up with some lessons I’ve learned as well as a listing of a few of my favorite resources.  Here goes…

What I’ve Learned:

  1. Don’t Take It Personally.  People act negatively as a result of their own emotions.  Lashing out at others is often a way to soothe oneself.  Nobody is responsible for the actions of other people.
  2. Seek To Understand.  Everyone wants to be understood, right?  The effort to understand Dad’s, Mom’s and the kids’ feelings will pay off in the long run… one way or another.  And if you’re lucky, your family members will reciprocate 😉
  3. Take Care Of You.  Take time to breathe, relax, rejuvenate and re-discover yourself.  The position of Dad’s Partner isn’t an easy one, so you better make sure you’re running on all cylinders.
  4. Don’t Play The Game.  As soon as Dad’s Partner indulges in the madness, she loses credibility.  “Treat everyone with politeness, even those who are rude to you – not because they are nice, but because you are.”  ~Author Unknown

Below are some of my favorite resources for Dad’s Partner.  Check them out…

  • Heather Hetchler: Heather is the mother of 4 and the custodial stepmother of 2.   She’s the founder of the web site Cafe Smom and hosts The Stepmom Connection on   Heather also provides bite-sized doses of support and encouragement through Twitter, @cafesmom.
  • Stepmonster: (written by Wednesday Martin, PhD)  This is the book for Dad’s Partner.  I read it last year and reviewed it here.  I think this book will also prove beneficial to Dads and Moms who have an interest in better understanding Dad’s Partner.
  • Coparenting 101 is a web site dedicated to helping Mom and Dad be better co-parents.  I realize that many would suggest Dad’s Partner has no business sticking her nose into this arena…. but, I find this site contains a lot of valuable information and has helped me gain perspective through the eyes of moms and dads.
  • StepMom Magazine:  Subscribers to StepMom Magazine receive monthly issues of this e-magazine as well as access to online forums dealing with many familiar issues.  This is a community created by and for partners of dads.  (I want to mention here that I wrote an article for the March Issue, but I don’t want to get all self-promotey right now.  This isn’t the time.  Is it?)

I know this is a short list- both of personal lessons and resources.  So feel free to tell me what I missed in the comment section… I know I left out a lot in the interest of space-saving and conversation-starting 😉


2 comments on “Dad’s Partner: What I’ve Learned and Where I’ve Learned It

  1. Deesha says:

    Tara, thanks so much for the shout-out! To your point, imagine our surprise when, about 6 months after launching the site, we discovered via analytics that one of the largest (if not at times, the largest) demographic searching and landing on our site is… ::drumroll:: dad’s partners! Women who are at their wits’ end because in their opinion, dad’s co-parenting situation is hindering their relationship. They feel disrespected, taken advantage of, and/or insecure and uncertain about their relationship.

    Side note: I stopped by to look for your contact info because I’d like you to be a part of a Mom/StepMom Roundtable on an upcoming episode of “Co-Parenting Matters” show. Please email me when you get a chance.

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