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Blended Bliss: Bonding, Bereavement, & Biding Your Time

by Haley Stromberg, LMFT

Table of Contents

  1. Navigating the Path of Harmonious Integration
  2. Patience Is Key
    • Suggestions for Step-Parent
    • Suggesions for Biological Parent
  3. Navigating the Relationship with the Ex: Fostering Cooperation & Respect
    • Suggestions for Navigating Relationship with the Ex
    • The Step-Parent’s Role In Co-Parenting with the Ex
  4. Learning to Include the Step-Parent
    • Suggestions for Learning to Include the Step-Parent
  5. Navigating Grief in Blended Families
    • Suggestions for Navigating Grief
  6. Navigating Caricatures in Blended Families
    1. The Torn One
      • Tips for the Torn One
    2. The Outsider
      • Tips for the Outsider
    3. The Wicked Stepmother
      • Tips for the Wicked Stepmother
    4. The White Knight or Disneyland Parent
      • Tips for the White Knight or Disneyland Parent
  7. In Closing

Navigating the Path of Harmonious Integration

The family unit stands as a cornerstone of our lives, a source of strength, love, and support. While change may lead to shifts in family dynamics, the bonds formed within these units often remain etched in our hearts. As we embark on the journey of blending families, a process that may arise from a death, divorce, or even remarriage, it becomes paramount to approach this new chapter with the utmost respect, understanding, and care. The relationships that were once woven into the fabric of a former family structure might seem like lost threads, but the tapestry of a new family, even while upgraded, requires delicate handling, well-defined boundaries, and unwavering patience. In this article, we will explore the art of blending families with respect – a practice that seeks to honor the past, embrace the present, and carve a harmonious path forward.

Patience Is Key

As you embark on the journey of blending families, it's important to set realistic expectations and approach this new phase with the understanding that patience is paramount. Ron L. Deal uses the analogy of a crockpot. Much like a crockpot meal that simmers to perfection over time, the process of melding two families together requires a gradual and deliberate approach. Rushing to achieve instant harmony, akin to a microwave meal, may inadvertently hinder the delicate process of becoming one big, happy family. While a biological family often enjoys the luxury of automatic trust built over years, a blended family's journey necessitates a more deliberate pace. Allow your stepchildren the time they need to warm up to their new role and relationships. Step-parents, while embracing their new role, should primarily consider themselves as a supportive presence to the biological parent's lead. This patient, gentle pursuit of bonding with stepchildren will pave the way for meaningful connections and authentic relationships, fostering an environment where respect and understanding flourish. Remember, blending families is a journey, not a destination, and each step forward is a building block toward a harmonious and united family unit.

Suggestions For the Step-Parent

  1. Proceed with Patience and Understanding:
    Recognize that building relationships takes time. Be patient and understanding as you establish connections with your stepchildren.
  2. Respect Boundaries:
    Respect the existing parent-child relationship. Avoid attempting to replace the biological parent and instead focus on building a positive bond as a step-parent.
  3. Open Communication:
    Foster open and honest communication with your stepchildren. Create a safe space for them to express their feelings, concerns, and thoughts about the blended family situation.
  4. Be a Supportive Presence:
    Offer emotional support and encouragement to your stepchildren. Be someone they can turn to for guidance and a listening ear, especially during challenging times.
  5. Maintain a Neutral Stance:
    Avoid getting involved in conflicts between your stepchildren and their biological parent. Refrain from taking sides and instead promote harmony and understanding.
  6. Create Shared Experiences:
    Plan activities that allow you to bond with your stepchildren. Engage in hobbies or interests that you can enjoy together to foster a sense of connection.
  7. Respect the Parenting Plan:
    Honor the parenting plan or agreements set by the biological parents. Work collaboratively with your partner to ensure consistency and avoid undermining each other's authority.
  8. Model Healthy Relationships:
    Demonstrate healthy communication and conflict resolution in your interactions with your partner and stepchildren. Serve as a positive role model for effective relationships.
  9. Be Flexible:
    Be adaptable and open to changes in routines and plans. Recognize that blending families requires flexibility and a willingness to compromise.
  10. Practice Self-Care:
    Prioritize your own well-being. Take time for self-care activities that rejuvenate you and help you manage any challenges that may arise in the blended family dynamic.

Suggestions for the Biological Parent:

  1. Open Communication:
    Foster open lines of communication with your children about the blended family situation. Encourage them to express their feelings and concerns without judgment.
  2. Validate Emotions:
    Acknowledge your children's emotions and concerns. Let them know that their feelings are valid and that you are there to support them.
  3. Set Clear Expectations:
    Communicate clear expectations and boundaries regarding behavior and responsibilities in the blended family. Work with your partner to establish consistent rules for all children.
  4. Reassure Love and Attention:
    Reassure your children of your love and attention. Spend quality one-on-one time with them to maintain a strong parent-child bond.
  5. Respect the Step-Parent Role:
    Encourage a respectful and positive relationship between your children and the step-parent. Support their efforts to connect and bond with your children.
  6. Empower Your Children:
    Empower your children to communicate with the step-parent and express their needs. Encourage them to have a voice in family decisions that affect them.
  7. Facilitate Inclusivity:
    Create an inclusive environment where all family members feel valued and included. Plan activities that involve both biological and stepfamily members if possible.
  8. Balance Loyalties:
    Help your children navigate any loyalty conflicts they may feel between you and the step-parent. Reiterate that they can have meaningful relationships with both of you.
  9. Be a Unified Front:
    Present a united front with your partner. Discuss and make decisions together, and avoid contradicting each other's parenting in front of the children.
  10. Monitor Adjustment:
    Keep an eye on your children's emotional well-being and adjustment to the blended family. If needed, seek professional support to ensure their smooth transition and overall happiness.

Navigating the Relationship with the Ex: Fostering Cooperation and Respect

In the intricate landscape of blended families, one of the most delicate threads to weave is the relationship with the ex-spouse. While the focus may be on creating a harmonious new family unit, acknowledging and navigating the dynamics with the former partner is essential for the well-being of all involved. The path to cooperation and respect can be riddled with challenges, yet it holds the potential to shape a supportive environment for children and facilitate the smooth integration of a blended family. In this section, we delve into the art of navigating the relationship with the ex, offering insights and suggestions to foster open communication, mutual understanding, and a cooperative co-parenting dynamic.

Suggestions for Navigating the Relationship with the Ex:

  1. Prioritize the Children:
    Keep the best interests of the children at the forefront. Regardless of personal differences, strive to create an environment where the children feel supported, loved, and secure.
  2. Establish Open Communication:
    Foster clear and respectful communication with your ex-spouse. Maintain regular contact regarding the children's well-being, schedules, and important events.
  3. Set Boundaries:
    Define healthy boundaries with your ex-spouse to ensure that conversations and interactions remain focused on co-parenting matters. Avoid rehashing past conflicts.
  4. Respect Each Other's Roles:
    Acknowledge the unique role each parent plays in the children's lives. Value your ex-spouse's input and perspective, even if you disagree on certain aspects.
  5. Practice Empathy:
    Understand that both you and your ex-spouse have your own challenges and emotions. Approach conversations with empathy and a willingness to listen.
  6. Create a Co-Parenting Plan:
    Develop a comprehensive co-parenting plan that outlines schedules, responsibilities, and decision-making processes. Having a clear roadmap can reduce misunderstandings. The step-parent should not be a part of making the
  7. Avoid Negative Talk:
    Refrain from speaking negatively about your ex-spouse in front of the children. Maintain a positive and neutral tone to preserve their emotional well-being.
  8. Include the Step-Parent:
    Encourage a respectful relationship between the step-parent and the ex-spouse. Cooperation and inclusivity set a positive example for the children.
  9. Manage Negative Dynamics:
    If the relationship between the ex-spouse and the step-parent is negative, prioritize the well-being of the children. Strive to minimize conflict and avoid involving the children in adult issues.
  10. Address Jealousy and Boundaries:
    Acknowledge any feelings of jealousy that the step-parent may have and honor their boundaries. Open communication and empathy can help navigate these emotions.
  11. Focus on the Present and Future:
    While acknowledging past issues, prioritize present and future interactions. Concentrate on effective co-parenting and the children's needs.
  12. Seek Mediation if Necessary:
    If communication becomes strained or contentious, consider enlisting the help of a professional mediator or counselor to facilitate productive conversations.
  13. Celebrate Milestones Together:
    Whenever possible, attend important events and milestones together as a united front. Demonstrating unity sends a powerful message to the children.
  14. Practice Flexibility:
    Be open to adjustments in schedules and arrangements when unforeseen situations arise. A flexible approach demonstrates a commitment to cooperation.
  15. Communicate Changes Promptly:
    Inform your ex-spouse promptly of any changes in plans or circumstances that may affect co-parenting arrangements. Clear communication helps avoid misunderstandings.
  16. Promote Consistency:
    Strive for consistency in rules, routines, and expectations between households. A unified approach contributes to the children's sense of stability.
  17. Focus on Solutions:
    When disagreements arise, shift the focus from blame to finding practical solutions that benefit the children. Collaboration fosters a healthier co-parenting relationship.
  18. Respect Personal Lives:
    Respect the privacy of your ex-spouse's personal life and new relationships. Establish mutual boundaries that ensure everyone's comfort and well-being.

Navigating the relationship with the ex requires patience, empathy, and a commitment to the well-being of the children involved. By fostering open communication, setting clear boundaries, and focusing on cooperation, you can create a co-parenting dynamic that promotes a positive and harmonious blended family environment. Remember, the relationship with the ex-spouse can greatly influence the overall well-being of the children, and your efforts to work together can contribute to a more supportive and loving family unit.

The Step Parent’s Role in Co-Parenting with the Ex

The role of the step-parent in creating a comprehensive co-parenting roadmap between the biological parent and the ex should primarily be one of support and facilitation. While the step-parent can offer insights and input into the process, the core decision-making and communication regarding co-parenting arrangements should remain between the biological parent and the ex-spouse.
Here's a breakdown of the step-parent's role in this context:

  1. Supportive Partner:
    The step-parent should offer emotional support to the biological parent as they navigate co-parenting discussions and decisions. This support can be crucial in maintaining the biological parent's well-being and confidence during potentially challenging conversations.
  2. Facilitator of Communication:
    The step-parent can play a role in facilitating open and respectful communication between the biological parent and the ex-spouse. They can help ensure that messages are conveyed clearly and without emotional bias.
  3. Offering Input:
    While the step-parent may have valuable insights and observations, any input they provide should be done in a non-intrusive and respectful manner. They can share their thoughts with the biological parent, who can then decide whether to incorporate these suggestions into discussions with the ex-spouse.
  4. Respecting Boundaries:
    It's essential for the step-parent to respect the boundaries of the co-parenting relationship between the biological parent and the ex-spouse. They should avoid directly engaging in co-parenting discussions or negotiations, as these are typically best handled by the biological parents themselves.
  5. Unified Approach:
    The step-parent should support and align with the decisions made by the biological parent regarding co-parenting arrangements. This unity in approach helps create a stable and consistent environment for the children.
  6. Understanding Their Role:
    The step-parent should recognize that their primary role in co-parenting discussions is to support and assist, rather than lead or direct. They should be sensitive to the fact that the biological parent and the ex-spouse are the central figures in this process.

In essence, the step-parent's role in creating a comprehensive co-parenting roadmap is to provide support, encourage healthy communication, and offer insights while respecting the boundaries and leadership of the biological parent in co-parenting matters. Their involvement should enhance the process and contribute to a harmonious co-parenting dynamic that benefits the children's well-being.

Learning to Include the Step-Parent: Navigating a Path of Unity and Understanding

The process of blending families extends far beyond the integration of physical spaces; it encompasses the delicate task of weaving new relationships into the fabric of existing family dynamics. Central to this intricate web is the pivotal role of the step-parent. As the family unit evolves, learning to include the step-parent becomes a significant aspect that requires careful consideration and nurturing. This journey is often marked by challenges, particularly for the biological parent who must strike a balance between honoring pre-existing relationships and creating space for the step-parent. Additionally, the step-parent may grapple with feelings of insecurity and being left out, further highlighting the importance of fostering unity and understanding. In this article, we delve into the art of learning to include the step-parent, offering insights and suggestions to create a harmonious family dynamic that embraces the unique contributions of all members.

Suggestions for Learning to Include the Step-Parent:

  1. Acknowledge Mixed Emotions:
    Understand that the process of including a step-parent can trigger mixed emotions in both children and the biological parent. Validate these feelings and create a safe space for open discussions.
  2. Communication is Key:
    Open and honest communication is vital. Regularly check in with both children and your partner to address concerns, share expectations, and discuss progress.
  3. Foster Unified Decision-Making:
    As a biological parent, aim for unified decision-making that involves both you and your partner, the step-parent. Ensure both voices are heard and respected in family matters.
  4. Balance Honoring Relationships:
    Strive to balance your role as a biological parent with your responsibility to include the step-parent. Find ways to honor both sets of relationships, acknowledging the unique value each brings.
  5. Create Inclusive Traditions:
    Develop new family traditions that embrace all members, including the step-parent. These traditions help forge connections and create shared memories.
  6. Quality One-on-One Time:
    Foster individual relationships by encouraging one-on-one interactions between your children and the step-parent. This allows for deeper connections to form.
  7. Transparent Expectations:
    Set clear expectations for your children regarding their interactions with the step-parent. Address any potential concerns and promote a respectful and inclusive atmosphere.
  8. Empower the Step-Parent:
    Encourage the step-parent to take an active role in family activities and decisions. Empower them to contribute their ideas and insights.
  9. Address Insecurities:
    Recognize that step-parents may experience feelings of insecurity or being left out. Regularly communicate your appreciation, love, and recognition of their efforts.
  10. Step-Parent's Role in Discipline:
    Clarify the step-parent's role in discipline and rule enforcement. Present a united front in establishing boundaries, avoiding any potential conflicts. (We believe in general that it is best for the step-parent to have supportive role, while the biological parent takes on the responsibility of discipline and enforcement- this can vary with the age of the child and the attachment to the step-parent. A general rule of thumb is that the more history/ trust/ nurturance the parent has with the child, the more discipline and enforcement the parent is entitled to give)
  11. Openly Discuss Feelings:
    Encourage the step-parent to share their feelings and concerns with you. Create an environment where they feel comfortable discussing any challenges they may face.
  12. Participate in Parenting Decisions:
    Involve the step-parent in making parenting decisions behind closed doors. Collaborate on matters that affect the family while maintaining that the enforcement and communication of these decisions to the biological children should come from the biological parent.
  13. Seek External Support:
    If difficulties arise, consider seeking guidance from a family therapist or counselor. A neutral third party can offer insights and strategies for effective inclusion.
  14. Celebrate Step-Parent Contributions:
    Regularly acknowledge and celebrate the positive contributions the step-parent brings to the family. Express gratitude and make them feel valued.
  15. Practice Patience:
    The journey of learning to include the step-parent takes time. Be patient with the process, allowing relationships to naturally evolve and strengthen over time.

The path to including a step-parent in the family dynamic requires intention, understanding, and compassion. By fostering clear communication, addressing emotions, and creating an inclusive environment, you can navigate this journey with grace and create a united family where all members feel cherished and valued. Remember, each step taken toward unity is a step closer to a harmonious and loving blended family.

Navigating Grief in Blended Families: Honoring the Past While Embracing the Present

The journey of blending families is a profound transformation that goes beyond the merging of households; it also encompasses the intricate emotions and ties that bind individuals to their past. Even amidst the excitement and anticipation of this new chapter, the specter of grief often makes its presence felt. Grief, in the context of blended families, can stem from the dissolution of previous family units, the changing roles and relationships, or the unfulfilled expectations of what once was or could have been. It is crucial to acknowledge and address these feelings, as they shape the dynamics within the blended family. In this article, we delve into the nuanced world of grief in blended families, offering insights and suggestions to navigate this complex emotional landscape with empathy and understanding.

Suggestions for Navigating Grief in Blended Families:

  1. Acknowledge the Complexity:
    Recognize that even in the midst of joy and excitement, grief can play a significant role. Each family member may carry emotions related to their previous family structure, and these feelings are valid.
  2. Set Realistic Expectations:
    Understand that grief takes time and does not adhere to a strict timeline. Give yourself and your family members the space to mourn the changes and losses that come with blending families.
  3. Validate Children's Feelings:
    Allow children to express their emotions, even if they seem contradictory. They may harbor both excitement about the new family and sadness about the changes in their previous roles and relationships.
  4. Respect Biological Connections:
    Recognize that children may maintain positive relationships with their other biological parent while struggling with their feelings toward a step-parent. Honor these connections and encourage open communication.
  5. Embrace the "Addition" Role:
    Step-parents should approach their role as a loving addition to the child's life rather than attempting to replace the biological parent. Embracing this approach fosters understanding and reduces potential resentment.
  6. Allow Room for Grieving Absence:
    Even if a child has never had a relationship with the missing biological parent, the absence can still be felt and grieved. Provide space for children to express their emotions about what could have been.
  7. Support Your Spouse's Grieving Process:
    If your spouse is dealing with grief over the dissolution of their previous family or the loss of the family they envisioned, offer empathy and understanding. Allow them to navigate their emotions without judgment.
  8. Create a Safe Space for Expression:
    Encourage open dialogue within the family about grief and its impact. Provide opportunities for family members to share their feelings and experiences.
  9. Managing Expectations for the Step-Parent:
    Much like point #7, it's important to acknowledge that step-parents often enter a relationship with the understanding that they're becoming a part of a pre-existing family. However, they may not have fully anticipated the emotional complexities that would entail. Feelings of comparison, jealousy, and sadness can also be components of grieving the expectations they might have had for this new relationship.
  10. Seek Professional Help:
    If grief is impacting family dynamics, consider involving a therapist or counselor experienced in blended family issues. Professional guidance can offer valuable insights and strategies.
  11. Practice Compassion:
    Be compassionate toward yourself and others as you navigate the complexities of blended family dynamics. Understand that grief is a natural response to change and that it requires patience and support to heal.

Navigating grief in blended families requires a delicate balance of understanding, patience, and open communication. By acknowledging and respecting the emotions of all family members, fostering a supportive environment, and seeking professional guidance when needed, you can create a space where healing, acceptance, and growth can flourish. Remember, the journey of blending families is a collective effort that embraces the past while embracing the boundless possibilities of the future.

Navigating Caricatures in Blended Families:

In the complex dynamics of blended families, complicated emotions and behaviors can emerge to which none of us are immune. In general, these responses, which we have listed here as caricatures, are the roles family members can take on when there is no place in the new family dynamic for the role of the real individual to exist. These caricatures can emerge that cast shadows on the genuine efforts to create harmonious relationships. These caricatures are not mere figments of imagination; they reflect complex dynamics that demand careful consideration and compassionate navigation. From the "Torn" biological parent to the infamous "Wicked Step-Mother," each caricature carries its own set of challenges and requires a nuanced approach to avoid. In this article, we delve into these characters that have existed throughout history, in the stories we tell, and in the very fabric of human nature, shedding light on their intricacies and offering suggestions to overcome potential pitfalls.

The "Torn-One"

The biological parent often finds themselves caught in the crosscurrents of family dynamics. Balancing the roles of partner and parent can be a tightrope walk, especially when ex-spouses, step-children, and new partners are involved. The strain of this position can lead to feelings of overwhelm and emotional exhaustion. It's crucial for the step-parent and ex-spouse to recognize and respect the delicacy of this role, avoiding undue pressure that could cause the biological parent to unravel under the weight of conflicting expectations. While the understanding that "the marriage comes first" is well-intentioned, it's important to acknowledge that in blended families, prioritizing the children's needs, particularly during the initial transition, is essential. Instead of pitting marriage against children, strive for a balanced approach where both receive attention and care within clearly defined boundaries. Remember, a thriving marriage contributes to a strong family foundation, but if you pit a parent’s love for their children against the love of a romantic partner, the love for the children will win out.

Tips to Avoid Becoming the "Torn-One":

  1. Open Communication:
    Share your feelings and challenges with your partner, ex-spouse, and step-children. Transparency fosters understanding and empathy.
  2. Establish Clear Boundaries:
    Define when and how family discussions and decisions will take place. This helps alleviate the pressure of constantly being in the middle.
  3. Prioritize Self-Care:
    Take time for yourself to recharge and prevent burnout. A well-supported biological parent is better equipped to navigate complex dynamics.
  4. Seek Professional Support:
    If feelings of overwhelm persist, consider seeking guidance from a family therapist or counselor. Professional help can provide valuable strategies.

The "Outsider"

Step-parents often grapple with feeling like an outsider in the established family unit. Overcoming this caricature requires patience, persistence, and a willingness to gradually integrate into the family's rhythms. Engage in shared activities, show interest in the children's lives, and foster connections one step at a time. Your dedication to building relationships will eventually help you find your place within the family.

Tips for Navigating the "Outsider" Dynamic:

  1. Engage in Shared Activities:
    Participate in family events and hobbies to bond with both your partner and step-children. Sharing experiences fosters a sense of belonging.
  2. Communicate Your Intentions:
    Express your genuine desire to be part of the family and build relationships. Open communication can dispel feelings of being an outsider.
  3. Respect Existing Dynamics:
    Understand that the family has established routines and dynamics. Be patient and respectful as you integrate into these existing structures.
  4. Connect Individually:
    Foster individual connections with each family member. Spend quality one-on-one time with step-children to build unique relationships.

The "White Knight" or "Disneyland Parent"

When the ex-spouse is elevated in the eyes of the children while the step-parent faces resistance, finding equilibrium can be challenging. The biological parent can play a pivotal role in addressing this dynamic by emphasizing the importance of all family members and gently challenging idealized perceptions. Encourage open discussions and provide opportunities for step-parents to showcase their positive contributions over time.

Tips for Navigating the "White Knight" or "Disneyland Parent" Dynamic:

  1. Foster Open Dialogue:
    Create an environment where family members can discuss their feelings and perceptions without judgment.
  2. Remember YOU are a GOOD parent!:
    If your children worship your ex, remind yourself why it may feel so vital for them to idolize the parent at this time. Children often idolize the parent they need the most from (whether it is because they get less time with this parent, or there are issues in that parent’s life and character which make them emotionally unavailable or emotionally unreliable to the child in some way). Children often take out their frustration and anxiety on the parent that is closest or most reliable because the child feels “safe” doing so. Idolizing a parent may be easier than admitting to oneself that the parent is unavailable to them or rejecting them in some way. This fantasy may also help the child cope with negative feelings they have about the instability or changes they are experiencing in their family dynamic.
  3. Get Comfortable with Negative Emotions:
    The faster you accept and validate negative feelings, the faster you and your family will be able to work through them. If you resist negativity, it will only build upon the stressors that brought about the negative emotions in the first place. Punishment for having big or negative feelings, or an environment that avoids and/or stuffs emotions is often much more damaging in the long term than the temporary changes of family dynamics. Keep reading…
  4. Validate Your Child’s Positive & Negative Emotions:
    Even if the positivity is directed at the ex while the negativity is directed at you and your new partner, remember that this too shall pass. It makes sense for your child to have big emotions during this transition and maybe even for years to come. The more we resist or deny our children’s emotions, the louder they become. Similarly, the more we validate or express understanding for our kids’ emotions, the less the emotion demands attention. Phrases like, “I know you miss your dad.” or “I understand that you don’t want [stepdad] here” or “Its ok that you’re mad at me right now.” allow your child the safe venting space for their big and confusing emotions. They may be mad at you, but by not reacting defensively, you create an environment where all emotions are ok. It may even help them name and process the feelings so they can move through them faster.
  5. Resist the Need to Defend:
    If you find yourself defending yourself or the step-parent, or even your ex to your child— or your child to your new partner— or your ex to your new partner, then you are communicating to your child that their perspective and feelings are invalid. Respect their feelings and work on not being triggered or taking them personally. Your job is to express validation (which is not the same as agreement), and then work together on solving the problems that are at play.
  6. Educate on Healthy Relationships:
    Teach children about healthy family dynamics and the roles of various family members. Help them understand that all members play important roles in their lives. Without badmouthing your ex, you can also address any unhealthy behaviors that exists in the other household. “Healthy families do this…” “I hope that the adults in your life respond like this…” “As your mom, it’s my job to…” “As your step-dad, it’s [insert name’s] job to do this”, etc.
  7. Empower Step-Parents:
    Offer step-parents opportunities to be involved in decision-making and family discussions. Their input helps shape the family's collective well-being.

Navigating these caricatures requires a blend of understanding, patience, and proactive efforts. By fostering open communication, respecting boundaries, and nurturing genuine connections, blended families can move beyond caricatures and create a tapestry of relationships that reflects the complexities and beauty of their unique journey. Remember, each step toward empathy and harmony contributes to the creation of a strong, united family unit.

In Closing

There are so many things to consider when blending families, but if you embrace the negativity, the grief, and the change, then you will be one step closer to “blended bliss.” Respect the roles that previously existed, respect the loss, and respect one another’s different perspectives and ways of dealing with change. And remember that the blending process takes time. Do not rush this process and tailor your expectations for closeness, stability, and appreciation from your kids on a timeline of years rather than weeks. Do not fret if this process is difficult. You are not alone, and you can always seek help from professionals or those who have walked this road before you. Happy blending!

This article is for educational purposes only. Greater House Counseling does not warrant or assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any of the information contained herein.