Trying to make a blended family a replica of your first family, or the ideal nuclear family, can often set family members up for confusion, frustration, and disappointment. Instead, embrace the differences and consider the basic elements that make a successful blended family:
- Solid marriage. Without the marriage, there is no family. It’s harder to take care of the marriage in a blended family because you don’t have couple time like most first marriages do. You’ll have to grow and mature into the marriage while parenting.
- Being civil. If family members can be civil with one another on a regular basis rather than ignoring, purposely trying to hurt, or completely withdrawing from each other, you’re on track.
- All relationships are respectful. This is not just referring to the kids’ behavior toward the adults. Respect should be given not just based on age, but based on the fact that you are all family members now.
- Compassion for everyone’s development. Members of your blended family may be at various life stages and have different needs (teens versus toddlers, for example). They may also be at different stages in accepting this new family. Family members need to understand and honor those differences.
- Room for growth. After a few years of being blended, hopefully the family will grow and members will choose to spend more time together and feel closer to one another.
Adapted from: RemarriageSuccess.com
blended families, blended family