In 2000 Steps sonstarted secondary school and step daughter aged 12 moved into care. It was a difficult time. In 2002 my eldest started secondary school followed by middle son in 2006. In 2003 youngest started primary school. In 2007 Step son turned 18 and left home. In 2009 Step daughter was 21 and in 2010 Step son turned 21, my eldest turned 18 and left home and youngest started secondary school.
Mother-in-law is fantastic treats my children the same as she treats hubbies two. Birthdays, Christmasas, starting college (helping with the funding) and leaving home.
I have two friensd who made a fuss of Step sons 18th, leaving home and 21st and with my eldest 18th but there it ends.
All our family and friends have kids younger than us and do not understand the significance of these events as they have yet to experience them but when I discuss it with them and explain my anxieties, excitement and nerves etc it just doesn't registar. Then it slowly starts to registar with theirs and they knock on my door and expect help and support and words of wisdom which I give freely.
I have cousins giving birth soon and I'm expected to give them things, advice and send cards of congratulations. I don't recall the last time they sent me a birthday card yet alone acknowledged the birth of one of my children or any of their life events.
So from now on I will not be rushing out to buy an 18th, leaving home, new baby card etc. If it's important enough for them to mention it in the hope I will acknowledge it then I will learn from example. Mine were first, I mentioned it, did they acknowledge?