Blending your families is difficult under the best of circumstances. It often happens when a parent is lost, or as a result of a separation or divorce. The new marriage becomes complicated when a stepparent joins an established family and assumes the role of an interloper hell bent on changing the status quo of vulnerable children or young adults.
One of the most challenging concerns will be dealing with your new family. It’s only natural that the loyalty and bonds your step children carry with them are those from their previous family and must be addressed with aplomb and sensitivity.
What do you do?
That said, it is up to you, with your spouse’s support, to build your personal family identity. Doing so slowly and with understanding is best. Pathways to a new family dynamic will happen naturally given enough time and warmth.
How to Start!
Begin the process by fostering a closeness among members of the blended family. Make it clear that you don’t want to replace members of the old family or its memories or traditions. You want to begin new ones that expand their horizons.
This does not happen overnight, but grows through the years as the new family cements trust among the individual members.
One way to begin this process is by taking family vacations. This crafts new memories of moments together. Then, to solidify these past moments, make photo albums with your new blended family. This allows them to showcase family trips to their friends, thus reinforcing memoirs of the new blended family.
The path is difficult, but remember, all things are possible with love.
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