Most notable--and sad--was the marked frequency of strained relations between stepdaughters and stepmothers. Indeed, much of the literature on stepparenting suggests that, broadly speaking, stepmothers and stepchildren are less close than stepfathers and stepchildren. What accounts for these differences?. 12 Apr 8. Ignore the gossip. “Being a stepmom can make you a target for gossip. If you feel yourself being dragged down or worried about the talk, remind yourself that the only thing that matters is your relationship with your family. What people were saying had no effect on me and my family.” — Kelly Chaplin. But they're correct that there are external forces, most beyond a stepmother's control, that may undermine her good intentions and best efforts with his children. These factors include loyalty binds, a child's jealousy and resentment, the Ex Factor, permissive parenting, cultural expectations about women and children, and a.