Coparenting with an ex can often be contentious. But sometimes, a split sets the stage for parents and their new significant others to bond over their love of a child. That's exactly what happened when Katie Musser, 24, met her now-husband Jeremy Musser. At the time, Jeremy had just become a father to then-newborn son Landon. Eventually, Katie became friends with Jeremy's ex Casey Bender, and all three joined forces -- along with Casey's husband Tyler -- to raise Landon. But it didn't happen overnight. Katie, who married Jeremy in September, took to Facebook last week to share her incredibly poignant story -- and the vows she took at her wedding to not only her new spouse but his son and ex-girlfriend.
"I wasn’t just going into a marriage with Jeremy and needed his trust and respect, but I needed Casey and Tyler’s too," the newlywed wrote. "One thing I promised was to be ONE family always. And I know without hesitation, we will never break that promise."
In the video of her vows, you see Katie share first with Casey and her husband Tyler, “First I want to thank you for accepting me as your friend and allowing me to be a part of Landon’s life. I promise to be an amazing mother to your son. I will guide, teach, and love him every single day.” Then, she brings Landon, now 4, over, and tells him -- wait, grab the tissues -- “I promise to stand by you, listen to you and love you every day. I promise to love Daddy with all my heart. I promise to be a best friend to your mommy and your daddy Tyler. We will be one big family that I promise you will have for the rest of your life.”
In the mere week that's passed since Katie shared her story, it has gone crazy viral. The recent bride and stepmom truly can't believe it. "It's so overwhelming how big this has gotten," she tells Parents.com. "We shared our story, because it has been a long tough heartbreaking four years because of all the backlash [to the four of us co-parenting Landon]. We weren’t going by the norm, and it’s like we completely ruined someone’s day, because of how we felt and treated our child. So, putting it out there was important to us. We needed to show that the important part was Landon. Not us, our past, or feelings, but Landon. And then our friendship happened. We needed to prove and put out there that it can be okay."
All of the positive feedback this family is receiving now is more than well-deserved. Katie, Jeremy, Casey, Tyler, and of course Landon's incredibly beautiful story serves an inspiration for blended, co-parenting families everywhere.