Blended Family Parenting

Helping parents to be effective in their blended families

Congratulations, you’re a blended family! Now what? April 30, 2011

There is a lot of excitement that comes with becoming the blended family. Now, all the thank-you cards have been sent and the wedding gifts put away and now you have to live life in yournew family structure. Now what?

Lower your expectations

Remember that no matter how you came to be a blended family, whether it was from divorce or a death of a parent, that this was a defining moment in your step child’s life. Something happens when all of the wedding festivities are over, and many times the child will feel insecure. You may have had the greatest relationship with the child prior to the wedding or even engagement, but the wedding marks the end of a chapter in their lives. It marks the end of the possibility that mom and dad might get back together.

Remember that you are not a replacement

This can be a hard concept to grasp, and it will take time and understanding before you fully understand this. Though you are not the actual “mommy” or “daddy” you still play an extremely important role in this child’s life. You are a parenting figure, though many times your step son or daughter will need you to understand that  you are not trying to replace the other biological parent.

Spending quality time

This cannot be emphasized enough. You probably know what type of interests your step son or daughter has by this point. Make intentional efforts to spend one on one time with your child doing those things that they enjoy. Quality time with your child goes a long way whether they are a step child or your own biological child.

Challenge: Make a date with just your step son or daughter to take them to their favorite park or outdoor activity.