stepchild

noun
step·​child | \ ˈstep-ˌchī(-ə)ld How to pronounce stepchild (audio) \

Definition of stepchild

1 : a child of one's wife or husband by a former partner
2 : one that fails to receive proper care or attention is no longer a stepchild in the family of nations— F. R. Smith

Examples of stepchild in a Sentence

The school has long been the forgotten stepchild of the state university system.
Recent Examples on the Web Honestly, mental health has been the stepchild of physical health forever. Fox News Staff, Fox News, 4 June 2022 The stepparent might help the stepchild with their homework or some other task upon request, but won’t nag the child to focus if they get distracted. Stephanie H. Murray, The Atlantic, 19 Apr. 2022 The relationship between a stepmom and stepchild can be a beautiful and meaningful one. Maribeth Jones, Country Living, 2 May 2022 In fact, existing research suggests that the relationship between stepparent and stepchild varies enormously from family to family—and, at least as far as stepkids’ well-being is concerned, that isn’t necessarily a problem. Stephanie H. Murray, The Atlantic, 19 Apr. 2022 The Cast platform has always been a weird stepchild in the Google OS lineup. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, 25 Mar. 2022 Moïse’s museum seems like a stepchild no one really wants. Brian T. Allen, National Review, 10 Mar. 2022 Technological innovation made camera work, previously a cultural stepchild for more than a century, ubiquitous. Los Angeles Times, 11 Feb. 2022 And so this was always the stepchild legislation to those two priorities. Grace Segers, The New Republic, 25 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stepchild.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of stepchild

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Learn More About stepchild

Time Traveler for stepchild

Time Traveler

The first known use of stepchild was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near stepchild

step change

stepchild

step chuck

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for stepchild

Last Updated

8 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Stepchild.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/stepchild. Accessed 2 Jul. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on stepchild

Nglish: Translation of stepchild for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stepchild for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Words Named After People

  • name tags
  • Namesake of the leotard, Jules Léotard had what profession?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!