18 Signs Of A Bad Stepmother & How to Deal With Her

As any child will tell you, having a stepmother is the worst. Although there are no official statistics on it, most will agree that for every good stepmother out there, there are three or four bad ones that qualify for all the signs of a bad step mother. It’s the story of Cinderella the world over.

Of course, not all step mothers are like this, but it’s enough to give young impressionable children nightmares! We hope your stepmother is not a bad one, however, if you doubt her love for your, there are some signs of a bad step mother you need to look out for.

If you have a stepmother, read on.


  • Having a bad stepmother can be a nightmare for children, and it’s a common theme in stories like Cinderella.
  • Signs of a bad stepmother include unkindness, constant meanness, absence, making fun of you, controlling your dad, being two-faced, and prioritizing herself.
  • A bad stepmother lacks respect for your privacy, is always late, lies frequently, disrespects your biological mother, puts you down, gossips about you, and tries to make you uncomfortable.
  • Dealing with a bad stepmother can involve talking to your father, asking for time alone, considering living separately, seeking help from a family counselor, and spending time with trusted people.
  • These points are supported by research articles on stepmother relationships and their impact on family dynamics and psychosocial adjustment.

Top Signs Your Stepmother Is Bad And Mean

Here are some signs of a bad stepmother that show your stepmother could be mean and needs to be avoided at all costs:

1. A Bad Stepmother Is Never Kind

It doesn’t matter how mean your real mom is or was, if your step mom is way more cruel than her, then it says something about her. Although she may be acting out of anger because you’re not her own daughter, it can’t be denied that children are naturally drawn to loving care.

If she’s never kind to you or the rest of your family she is probably a bad stepmother!

2. A Bad Stepmother Is Always Mean

Although they may not be the nicest people in the world, sometimes parents are too attached to their children to be mean. If your step mother is always getting on your nerves about little things you do around the house or is constantly insulting you for no reason though, she’s most likely a bad news!

3. A Bad Stepmother Is Never There

If you step mom is never there when you need her, it’s probably for one of three reasons. Either she is working all the time, out with her friends or dating someone else behind your dad’s back. If none of these things are true then that says something special about her character right there!

4. A Bad Stepmother Makes Fun Of You

If your step mom is always making fun of you alone and when other people are around, then that’s a pretty good sign she doesn’t like you. She may think it cool to embarrass you about little things in front of her friends, but to a child it’s the worst feeling in the world.

If your bad step mom makes fun of you, that's a sign she doesn't like you

It doesn’t matter if she can get away with it, because if you’re smart and you know what “cruel” means, then she is obviously not your real mom!

5. A Bad Stepmother Controls Your Dad

If your step mother is constantly telling your dad what he should and shouldn’t do, it’s a sign of trouble. The only reason she would be trying to control him like this is because she doesn’t care about how he feels, which means things won’t end well for you if you stick around.

6. A Bad Stepmother Is Two Faced

Although they never admit it, everyone likes having someone agree with them all the time. Of course, we don’t mean blindly agreeing with everything somebody says, but there’s no way anyone could be annoyed by always having someone give them an easy ride.

If your stepmother is constantly playing happy family when other people are around – i.e. your dad, her friends etc. – but is always either calling you names or being cruel when no one else can hear, then she’s two faced and shouldn’t be trusted!

7. A Bad Stepmother Is Always Worried About Herself

If your step mother is always worrying about herself and what others think of her, it means she doesn’t give a hoot about anyone else.

She might tell you that she loves you and wants to make things work for the good of the family – which usually means making sure no one messes with her – but once someone puts themselves first all the time, trouble will follow!

8. A Bad Stepmother Has No Respect For Your Privacy

If your step mother has no respect for your privacy then she is not a good human being, let alone a caring mother. Probably sees you as nothing but an object to be used however she wants!

A bat step mother is someone who can't respect your privacy

9. A Bad Stepmother Is Always Late

We all have meetings with people which can’t start until everyone arrives. It’s the same with family get togethers, sports days or anything else for that matter. If your step mom is always late though, it’s probably because she doesn’t care about anyone else except herself!

10. A Bad Stepmother Lies A Lot

Although we all lie sometimes to get out of trouble, a good step mother doesn’t lie about big things to your dad. If she does and gets away with it and you know, then she’s probably lying about other things too – like how much she loves you!

11. A Bad Stepmother Has No Respect For Your Biological Mother

This one is pretty obvious really and you need to be very, very careful if your new step mother has no respect for your biological mother. It’s something everyone needs to get on with though whether they like it or not!

12. A Bad Stepmother Puts You Down

If your step mother is always putting you down in front of your biological mother as well as others, this is surely not good.  If she thinks it’s cool to make you look like a fool in front of your friends, family and anyone else for that matter, then there’s only one thing she’ll be planning next – how to make sure no one likes you!

13. A Bad Stepmother Gossips About You To Other People

Although we all like the occasional bit of gossip about ourselves, it isn’t cool if someone is constantly gossiping about you behind your back. No one likes it and no one wants friends they can’t trust, so be careful with this one!

14. A Bad Stepmother Tries To Make You Feel Uncomfortable

If your step mother tries to make you feel uncomfortable in any way at all, this is totally wrong! It doesn’t matter if she does it by making nasty comments or whispering behind your back – nothing justifies this kind of behavior and you should definitely think about moving if things continue!

15. A Bad Stepmother Controls Your Behavior

No one has the right to tell you what clothes to wear or who to hang out with, especially not someone that isn’t even related to you. If your step mother tells you how to behave, then she’s probably doing it because she wants everyone else to know how she thinks they should behave as well! Watch out for people trying to control your behavior.

16. A Bad Stepmother Controls Your Communication

Just like children in a family with their parents, it is totally wrong for anyone to tell you who you can and cannot communicate with! If your step mother starts telling you not to talk about certain things or to people, then she obviously knows that what she is doing is wrong and she is trying to cover it up. And if anyone tries to control how you communicate, step away as fast as you can!

17. A Bad Stepmother Is Always Putting Someone Else First

If your stepmom is always putting others first, especially people you’ve never met before, then it’s probably because she doesn’t care about anyone else except to make them do what she wants – and that means that if someone talks about your step mom behind her back, she’ll be the first one there to tell everyone!

18. A Bad Stepmother Has A Quick Temper

Everyone gets angry now and then, but if your step mother is always stomping around the house like a bear with a sore head because something is not how she wants it to be, she’s most likely a bad mom.

How To Deal With A Bad Stepmother?

If you’re like most other people who go through this, then you’ll know that you can’t leave your father behind. However if your step mom is making your life hell, there are plenty of ways to get her out of the picture without breaking up a family!

1. Talk To Your Father

If things are starting to get out of hand, perhaps you should tell your father how you feel about the situation. Although he married a woman who is not at all good for his family, this doesn’t mean that you can speak badly about her – it could make him choose between the two of you!

Signs of a Bad Stepmother - Talk With Your Father

2. If You Can’t Leave, Ask For Some Time To Yourself

If you can’t leave your father and mother, then ask for some time to yourself. Tell them that you need a few months or even a year to clear your head and work out what you want to do in life – just make sure it’s enough time for them not to feel suspicious!

3. Live Alone

If you think that things can’t get any worse living with your step mother, then it might be a good idea to live by yourself. This way, she won’t have as much time to interfere in your life and, if she’s as bad as everyone says, then you’ll definitely need some space!

4. Talk To A Family Counselor

No matter what happens or how long it takes for you to make a decision about your family problems, a family counselor will always be there to listen and give their advice. If you don’t want anyone else knowing about the situation, this is the best place to go so that no one finds out!

5. Spend Time Around People You Trust

Don’t spend all of your time alone just because you’re trying to avoid one person. If there are people that you trust around, then they will definitely be able to give you some good advice about what is going on with your step family!


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