Eleven years ago my mother passed away at the age of 55. She left 7 kids, our dad and grandchildren. Last month my father remarried.
Six of us are married with kids (22 grandchildren). This will be the first family photo with our new step mom.
My siblings originally didn’t want her in the family photo. I disagreed. They have now said they are willing to have 1 photo with her and then take a family photo without her. I still disagree. She is family and belongs in the family photo. I do not want to be part of a family photo that excludes.
Is this ok? Am I missing something?
Should I still show up and be in both photos? 0310-16
Your siblings are exceptionally shortsighted because they fail to see the contribution your new stepmother will make in the lives of the grandchildren. My MIL died when I was pregnant with the second child and my FIL remarried 2 years later. My step-MIL is the only grandmother my children really know and she’s been a dandy grandmother who treats them like her biological grandkids. We celebrate expanding the family tent pegs to include those who have married into the family. My husband refers to his stepmother as his “bonus mom” and she is included in everything the family does. There was one extended family member who objected to the marriage and stepmom’s inclusion but that same person also made it known that those of us who married into the family weren’t really family members either.
Further, your siblings are shortsighted in not seeing how excluding the new wife will possibly hurt, offend and distance your father from various family members. We figured that if Dad loved his new wife, we should follow the example and try to love her as well as a way to honor Dad’s choice in a new spouse. My brother-in-law deeply respects and has affection for his stepmother because he, like us, believes she extended Dad’s life and made his last years very happy and pleasant and for that we are profoundly grateful. After living near her (and my late FIL) for the last 25 years, she is moving back to her home state this summer to be closer to her extended family and we wept at the news.
You should talk with your father about the consequences of your not participating in a group photo that excludes the new stepmother. He and his wife may not be as concerned as you about it. One option is to take family lineage photos, i.e. grandfather>child>grandchild……or your father surrounded by all the biological kids (no spouses) but if there is to be a family photo that includes the persons who have previously married into the family, then your stepmother needs to be included as well as the newest member.