The term blended families is used to describe the new home made by two spouses that both bring children from prior relationships into a new marriage. Similar to the classic television show The Brady Bunch, two parents that remarry must work to bring their children together and create another cohesive family unit. But it is not always a charming and fun as a television show.
How can you blend your family with another?
Blending a family is apt to bring unique challenges to the parents. If this is their second marriage, it will be the parent's first time bringing two families together as one.
Some advice for parents that are blending their families:
- Realize that blending families will be challenging since the children from the other spouse will not be used to their step-parents rules, discipline, and other issues
- Develop a plan to treat the children the same but detailing what the expectations are when it comes to chores, finances, visitation, and more
- Practice patience with the children that may have a difficult time adjusting to this new set up
- Create discussions rather than arguments, since the effects of this fighting can fracture any of the advances made in blending
- Honesty between spouses can help mitigate their expectations in the family
- Discuss how the children should be disciplined and stick to this plan together
- Develop personal relationships with stepchildren by making time to ispend one-on-one time with them
- Allow each child to have a great relationship with both their biological parent and their step-parent
- Go into this blended family as a team that have one another's backs
Being thrust into a blended family can be difficult for children that are resistant to the idea of an additional parent or siblings. However, these families can be really great for children if they are properly brought together.