If you have recently gone through the breakup of a marriage, getting into another relationship is often the last thing on your mind. In the aftermath of a separation and divorce, being single may seem the best course of action for both you and your children. At the same time, the odds are great that one day it will happen: you will meet someone who shares your interests and values, someone you enjoy spending time with. Before you realize what is happening, you may be considering remarriage. According to statistics on social trends from the Pew Research Center, 40 percent of divorced people eventually remarry, and the majority of these new unions involve children from previous marriages. While blending step parents and children together can be one of life’s greatest challenges, it also provides great rewards. We have consulted with parenting experts to make this list of six tips to help you and your children make this transition.
- Give It Time- According to experts at Parenting Magazine, it can take between two and five years for blended families to establish themselves and get comfortable together. It takes time for both parents and children to settle into new roles and to ditch the ‘company manners’ in favor of being their true and authentic selves.
- Do Things Together– Doing things together and having shared experiences makes for good memories and helps to develop common grounds. Taking a trip, attending sporting events, and participating in recreational pursuits together will get everyone relaxing and having fun together.
- Leave Your Ex Out of It– Parents Magazine advises that it is best to avoid disparaging your ex in front of your children and your new spouse, and avoid using the things you and your ex did as a family as a point of reference. Bringing up the past makes everyone uncomfortable, and your children will not appreciate hearing you air their other parent’s faults in front of what they may still consider to be strangers.
- Allow Alone Time– While the emphasis is largely on spending time together, it is a good idea to balance that with some alone time. Carve out niches within your home for your children to get away by themselves when they need it. It is also good to spend some one on one time with your kids without your new spouse or their step siblings, doing the specials things you have always enjoyed together.
- Establish the Non Negotiables– Clearly enforced rules can help to create order out of chaos. According to Psychology Today, every family needs to establish some basic rules to live by that are simply not up for negotiation. Establish what these are for your family, and stick to your guns when it comes time to enforce these matters.
- Make Your Own Traditions- Creating traditions is a good way to get everyone working together and feeling positive about the new family dynamic. Have a special meal on a certain today of the week, have a game or movie night, or develop a way of saying good morning or good night that is uniquely your own. Pick something that everyone is comfortable with, do it regularly, and soon you will notice your children looking forward to these traditions, and maybe even bragging to their friends about the little things you all do that makes your family special.
Contact Our Experienced South Carolina Family Law Attorney
If you or someone you love is going through a separation or divorce, contact our experienced South Carolina family law attorney. At Lauren Taylor Law, we can help ensure that your rights and assets are protected, while providing the aggressive legal representation you need. Serving the entire Upstate area, our Greenville attorney will guide you through what can be a complicated legal process, while always looking out for your best interests. Contact our office today for an initial consultation.
South Carolina divorce attorney Lauren Taylor practices family law in Charleston and Greenville. She graduated from the Charlotte School of Law, and has been practicing for more than ten years.
Since the firm’s inception in 2012, Mrs. Taylor has helped hundreds of people navigate the uncertainties surrounding the family and criminal court process.
She has cultivated a team that ensures each case has a strategy crafted specifically to the clients needs and desires.
Her commitment to top notch service has led her to open two additional offices in the low country where she now resides with her husband Michael and her golden retriever, Buster.