Tips to Make a Blended Family Work
Having a blended family can be an incredible journey. Your new spouse brings children into an already positive equation, allowing the family to merge and blossom in ways you previously might not have experienced. As exciting as this is, this happy circumstance is not without its own challenges. Adjustments always require some time, patience, and planning. Here are some helpful tips for you to keep in mind and implement within your newly blended family.
Acknowledgment: You want everyone in your new household to get along, but accomplishing this is no small task, which is why it is important to acknowledge from the onset that you are going to run into some problems. This is completely normal and doing so means you can now prepare yourself to take on these challenges and figure out how your new family will handle issues like discipline and childcare, or other topics you have yet to address. It might seem like an uphill climb at first, but once you get into the swing of things, your family will be stronger for it.
Devise a Plan: Everything, including parenting, runs smoother when a plan is in place. Some of the things you will want to discuss with your spouse in regards to your merged family include:
The role each of you will play when it comes to parenting or facilitating the development of your children
Division of labor
Expectation of how much time the couple will be able to spend together without the children
Determine the amount of access grandparents or other extended relatives will be able to have
Understand Your Children: We often only see things from our perspective, but it is also important to try to understand your children’s point of view. Children do not get a choice in the matter when it comes to having a new family member or a change in family dynamic, so it is important to handle this delicate situation with care and patience. Make time to speak with them and ask how they are handling the new experience. You are all in this together and having open, honest conversations will help strengthen the bonds you share.
Have Discussions with Your Spouse: A lot of discussions occur within the context of arguments. Instead of waiting for an argument to take place, have a calm discussion with your spouse about any concerns you might have. It is much easier to reach resolutions when both parties are in a more rational, less emotional state of mind. You should also avoid arguing in front of your children. Chances are they already witnessed enough fighting if they witnessed their birth parents’ divorce, so do not make it worse. Children often internalize the arguments they see and it lingers with them, so if you must argue, avoid doing so in their presence.
Agree On How to Discipline the Children: Finding common ground on how to discipline children is a task even for non-blended families, but is still a critical element to address. Talk to your partner about the rules and punishments that existed in your previous relationship. After all, it would be unfair to the children to suddenly change them overnight. If you do decide to change the rules, it should be a gradual transition to give them time to accept the new changes.
Create a Strong and Personal Bond with Your Stepchildren: To be a truly blended family, you need to be a parent to your stepchildren. This means spending time with them without the presence of your partner to work on creating your own special bond with them. You must also make a habit of not referring to your stepchildren as just your partner’s children. You are now their parent as well, so it is time to think of them as your own.
Oklahoma City Adoption Lawyers
At Mazaheri Law Firm, we have the compassion and skill to represent couples and individuals who are seeking to build or blend their families through adoption. Our Oklahoma City adoption lawyers are hands on and provide personalized guidance and support through each step to ensure you are able to move forward on your new journey together. We will walk you through the necessary paperwork and procedures, and make sure your adoption is in compliance with state and federal laws. Our goal is to make this process as stress-free for you as possible, so you can focus on what matters most – your family.
Contact us today at 405-414-2222 for a consultation.