The problem is, the message of Valentine’s Day doesn’t acknowledge the pain that can come with being in love or in a relationship.
From the onset, a stepfamily has several moving parts that a first family doesn’t encounter. For the children in a stepfamily, it is an overwhelming amount of change and can feel destabilizing. Studies have shown that that the most disrupting factor for children is not divorce, but exposure to parental … Read More
Every family has it’s own unique culture. Family cultures include a set of belief systems that include aspects such as: how to spend money, how to spend time, what acceptable behaviors are and family traditions and rituals. When a stepfamily unites, they face the challenge of merging these cultures (Papernow, … Read More
Conflict in marriage is what brings many couples into counseling. With two unique individuals coming together, values, opinions, and personality traits are bound to collide. According to John Gottman, a leading research scientist on marriage and family, all marital conflicts fall into one of two categories: either they can be … Read More
In newly formed stepfamilies, the standard advice that I give to the couple is for the parent to take the lead with discipline. There is a great deal of research supporting this stance. The most helpful role for step parents during the early years of stepfamily formation is to nurture … Read More
While the step-couple may be experiencing the bliss of their new relationship, children are likely experiencing a myriad of emotions. When a stepfamily forms, changes often happen too quickly for the children. According to Dr. Patricia Papernow, this presents a common challenge that stepfamilies encounter: Children are dealing with losses, … Read More
When families blend and stepfamilies are created, it is not uncommon for problems or conflict to arise. This adjustment process comes with its own unique rewards and challenges. Research findings suggest that a stepfamily takes several years to develop into a family unit. In order to increase your best chance … Read More