What is a Childless Stepparent?

Cultivate Your Garden

As childless stepparents, we must simply cultivate our own garden.

The term “childless stepparent” may seem like an oxymoron – after all, if I have a stepchild, I’m not childless, right? Not true. Childless stepparents are women and men who have no children of their own – none from a previous marriage, none in their current marriage. Their spouse has children from a previous marriage.

Childless stepparents may parent their stepchildren from time to time, but when their stepchild has two involved parents, childless stepparents are not parents. We are important members of the household, supportive spouses, caring adults in our stepchildren’s lives – but we are not parents. For those of us who want to be parents, making peace with this essential fact can be difficult.

  • If (like me) you have always wanted children but it hasn’t unfolded that way – or if you choose not to have children;
  • If (like me) you and your stepchild love one another – or if you have trouble getting along;
  • If (like me) your stepchild has two involved parents – or if your spouse’s former spouse is not involved in raising their child.

No matter what your situation, being a childless stepparent brings unique challenges. I wrote The Childless Stepparent Manifesto to help us face these challenges with a clear mind and an open heart.

I encourage you to read the About Me page for some context on my situation and why I’m writing about childless stepparents. I try to write a new post every few days.

I hope this blog becomes a place where childless stepmoms and childless stepdads can share their experiences. I’m glad you’re here, and I welcome your thoughts – please comment and share.