Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job The Blended Family – Hopes, Fears, And Tasks (Part 2 Of 2)

You are searching about Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job, today we will share with you article about Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job was compiled and edited by our team from many sources on the internet. Hope this article on the topic Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job is useful to you.

The Blended Family – Hopes, Fears, And Tasks (Part 2 Of 2)

(Continued from Part 1 of 2)

From Lonely Outsider to “Doh-Si-Doh”: Finding the Rhythm of the Dance

There’s no way that everybody will feel central to the family all the time. The task is to make it normal for everyone to be in a dance with each other, and to make the dance fun. Another essential task of a marriage is for the couple to become comfortable with each other’s separateness, or individuation – following the call of their own life development. This can be a stumbling block for many couples who resist the shift away from an early symbiotic closeness where everything they do is together. However, making this shift is essential for a successful marriage. It will also help tremendously in countering insecurities when jealousies between children and spouses arise. In essence, it’s about finding the balance where everyone needs the biological parent – the hub of the family – just a little bit less, and hopefully begin to interact with each other – step-parent and step-children, step-siblings with each other – more and more.

Step-parents can be creative about ways to connect with their new spouse’s kids. It’s a good idea for parents to discuss how the step-parent can be more involved, from attending parent/teacher conferences at school to teaching a child a skill the step-parent can do, attending basketball games together, or just taking the time to listen to the child’s telling of their day. I’ve found that when kids don’t open up right away, sometimes just hanging out in the same room, without the TV on, gives rise to conversation. And conversation gives rise to, well, finding out things about your kids. By the way, the challenge of spending non-TV time together with kids is not limited to blended families – everybody struggles with this. The first thing to do is turn off the TV, then look around for a fun way to get out of the house – together.

Balance of Power, Not Power Struggle

Not only is there a challenge in balancing alliances and keeping everyone happy. There’s often a tug of war for power.

Often in a divorce suit one parent is hoping to have more control over their children’s lives than the other parent. However, more and more often, both parents share joint custody, which means both parents have to communicate in decision-making for their kids. This is troublesome enough, but it can also lead to confusion for the new step-parent: just how involved should the new step-parent be?

A new step-parent has a difficult role to fill: is he or she a parent, a friend, a baby-sitter, or a mere adult who happens to share living space? The unfortunate side-effect to not knowing the answer to this question is that the child or children often end up with too much power. Instead of the parents acting as a team, children learn they can pit one parent against the other. They do this in biological nuclear families, but they do it even more in blended families. Children can manipulate their biological parent to feel guilty (it’s an easy place to go – parents usually feel guilty already for a divorce) for not giving them what they want. A biological parent feels uneasy about the new step-parent’s style of giving discipline, so they step in to “save” the child. The new step-parent loses their power, and the child learns he or she can get away with just about anything.

Sometimes a new step-parent will feel they have to make up for a deficit in a former spouse’s shortcomings as a parent, and “straighten the kids up.” This usually meets with defeat, and resentment on all ends. Maybe the “corrective” parenting style of a step-parent can be effective in time, but only after an initial relationship-building period has occurred, establishing a strong sense of respect and acceptance on both sides. This can and usually does take years. Until then, the step-parent is best situated to remain a firm and friendly authority figure who supports the biological parent’s role.

It is important that neither the biological parent nor the step-parent give up their role as the responsible adult in the house. In time the children will find comfort rather than resentment in the structure that you uphold. Keep in mind an interesting piece of research about children and their need for boundaries: Researchers observed children playing in a back yard. In the first case the yard was open to the neighborhood, no fence or closure. The children played together huddled close to each other and close to the house. In the next case the children played in the same size yard, this time with a secure fence around it. The children enjoyed the full length of the yard, now confident they were safe with a known boundary in place. Lesson: children need structure, boundaries, and the firm and aware presence of a competent adult in their midst. While they might outwardly bristle at parental discipline, underneath they feel relieved. They are not adults, and no matter what they might say, they really do know they want and need the adults to be in charge.

Trouble Signs – What to Watch Out For

Every family has its ups and downs, and some families have extra challenges with “high-need” children, or even “high-need” parents. A certain amount of strife is to be expected, and should not cause alarm.

However, some things are sure signs a relationship is in trouble. Here is a list that has been cultivated by many couples therapy specialists with decades of experience. Take a look, and if any of these signs has been occurring for more than a few weeks, it’s time to get some help. Remember, we didn’t come into this world knowing how to build rockets without lots of training. Why should we expect that managing the foibles of a blended family should be an easier?

1. The couple has stopped talking with each other about family issues, and even avoid each other’s company. When they do talk, it is laced with sarcasm, a deadly form of indirect anger. This is a big red flag, because it represents a breakdown in willingness to work as a team, and suggests hopelessness has set in. Many people find dealing with conflict to be difficult, which it is, until we’ve learned some effective conflict-resolution skills. Take heart: these skills work, and many therapists can help you learn them with your spouse. It’s actually easier than you think, and tremendously rewarding to actually resolve problems.

2. The household has become a democracy, in that the children are too involved in making decisions. It’s the parents’ role to make the decisions for the children, who feel burdened by too much responsibility. It has been a trend in the last generation or two to give children more of a voice in family matters, in reaction to a much more repressive parenting style in the ’40’s and ’50’s. I think this is a good change – kids deserve to be listened to, and probably need to be heard even more. But being listened to is a separate process from kids making decisions, which must remain firmly in the hands of the adults. When adults have given too much responsibility to their children, it suggests the parents have trouble being adults themselves.

3. Some parents get into a competition about their kids, and which kids will benefit from the family resources. It becomes “my kids vs. your kids.” Once parents become polarized like this, nobody wins and everyone feels uneasy. Again, parents will benefit by talking it out with each other and developing a policy that everyone knows and agrees to. This often shows up more in older families, where couples have adult children who are expecting family benefits, like college tuition, wedding expenses, help with a down payment on a house, or even inheritances. Often, couples have a hard time getting past their fears of talking openly about what they feel comfortable with. It’s better, however, to talk it through than to wait to see how it plays out.

4. Parents are not using relationship skills to problem-solve family issues. Instead, one or the other parent unilaterally takes over parenting, disregarding the other parent’s contribution. Many step-parents have not been parents before the marriage, and don’t feel confident in their skills. The easiest thing is for the biological parent to assume full control. This might be appropriate in the beginning, but over time it is important to bring in the parental role of the step-parent, and when there are situations that he or she doesn’t know how to handle, that’s the time to ask for help from the biological parent. It’s okay to be a learner. There’s no one way to be the perfect parent, or there wouldn’t be radical parenting style shifts from one generation to the next. We are all experimenting. The biological parent has been practicing since their children’s birth. Many step-parents will enroll in a parenting class, such as Love and Logic, and many others. And all of us will regress to our own parents’ style (no matter how much we hated it growing up) when we are stressed. It takes a lot to be a good parent, so don’t beat yourself up, but do use resources.

5. The step-parent resents the biological parent’s kids coming to visit. This usually comes up after the routine has settled in and the step-parent finds that the biological children are not as accepting of the new spouse as they had hoped, or the kids are trouble-makers. “They just won’t warm up to me,” I often hear. This always suggests there is an underlying problem, where someone, often the children and the spouse, feel like outsiders. There is usually some difficult history here that needs to be dealt with – the “visiting” children didn’t get properly taken care of during a nasty divorce, or they resent their parent for moving on from the original family, or perhaps the step-parent is stuck in their expectation that their new life wouldn’t be “intruded upon” by the “leftovers” of a former marriage. These are tough images, but they do come up for people. When they do, it’s a strong indicator they would benefit from therapy. Most all of us come from imperfect families, and drag along our childhood wounds to our adult lives. There’s no shame in that, but hopefully we’ll be able to work on these issues without hurting the people we love. Therapy is a good way to do that.

6. The new step-parent feels like the new nanny. This is what I call the “Mary Poppins Myth,” that some people hope their new partner will fill the role of parent while the biological parent continues their life at work or is otherwise removed from the daily tasks of family life. Some couples agree to this arrangement, but forget to take into account that the children will be less eager to accept the new full time parent. Some partners don’t even realize they’ve put such a burden on their new spouse, but think of it as fulfilling a family tradition: “this is just how it’s done.” Whether it’s your tradition or not, you are still in a marriage that will require much more compromise and, in our culture, more equal footing. Otherwise, it is a setup for resentment to set in.

7. The children have stopped talking to the step-parent. In the first year or two, children are likely to be more ambivalent about getting close to the step-parent. But if they have moved closer and then have pulled back, there’s trouble. It’s important to investigate it sooner than later. Kids are generally less able to talk about problems than adults are, and can be even more reluctant to say something negative about a step-parent. Yet, if they feel hurt by a step-parent, and find that their biological parent is “siding with” the step-parent, the child feels more and more excluded, unimportant, and unwanted. Who wouldn’t feel angry? When this situation is allowed to ferment, long-term estrangement can develop, and that can take years to resolve. I have seen this over and over again, and the sad thing about it is that it usually starts with something very simple and mundane.

The problem is that the small issues start to translate as a larger pattern or attitude – a chronic dynamic that everyone comes to expect. Again, this can happen in original (non-divorced) families as easily as in blended families, but it can be so destructive that it bears discussing here. When it gets to the point that no one can talk about it without a big blow-up, you do have another choice other than giving up: see a couples counselor. It’s better to start with couples counseling first because very often the underlying problems reside with the couple. If necessary, a session or two can include a child, to help everyone share their story and be heard. It’s always amazing to me how much is discovered by partners when they talk about things in therapy. Even after living together for years, there’s so much they don’t know about each other, often because they don’t know what questions to ask, and they often have a hard time hearing the answers. Couples therapists are skilled at helping everyone truly be heard. Once you know how the other person feels underneath the surface issue, much more resolution is possible.

Overwhelming Doesn’t Mean Impossible – Therapy Can Help!

If taking on a blended family seems overwhelming, take heart: it is. But it can also bring tremendous joy when those hard won moments finally happen, and your spouse’s child voluntarily offers a kind word, or even a small hand. When your step-daughter asks you to walk her down the aisle. When your stepson surprises you years later with a simple thank you for being a part of his life.

So many options and directions for growth open up when a couple comes to therapy. Some people think therapy is “just for nuts,” that needing therapy is a clear sign of weakness or that if you need it, something is wrong with you. That might have been true decades ago, but both therapy and the people who use it have changed a lot in the last several years. Most of the people I see are very ordinary people who are needing a little guidance in an area of their lives, or they might feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the life task set before them. Couples work is usually short term, and can help a family shift quickly to a much more satisfying way of life. Unfortunately, too many couples wait until they are on the brink of divorce before getting help, and by then it is usually too late. Some therapists advocate treating marriage like we take care of our cars: we bring them in for tune-ups. I personally have found NOTHING more challenging than being in a marriage and raising a child, and believe the help gained through therapy is the best resource there is.

Above all, when a blended family succeeds, it gives everyone the experience that marriage can work, family can be a good thing, and that we are lucky to come from family who loves us. I am hearing this more and more in my practice as grown children from blended families are able to look back with appreciation for their parents’ struggles and accomplishments. I’m also seeing more adult children whose parents, disengaged from them at some point because of divorce, have reunited and have learned to become friends. So often, these healed relationships begin with one simple gesture: reaching out.

Video about Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job

You can see more content about Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job on our youtube channel: Click Here

Question about Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job

If you have any questions about Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job, please let us know, all your questions or suggestions will help us improve in the following articles!

The article Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job was compiled by me and my team from many sources. If you find the article Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job helpful to you, please support the team Like or Share!

Rate Articles Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job

Rate: 4-5 stars
Ratings: 8967
Views: 9730179 6

Search keywords Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job

Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job
way Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job
tutorial Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job
Can A Family Of.4 Manage On One Full.Time.And.One.Part Time Job free
#Blended #Family #Hopes #Fears #Tasks #Part

Source: https://ezinearticles.com/?The-Blended-Family—Hopes,-Fears,-And-Tasks-(Part-2-Of-2)&id=1194796

Related Posts

default-image-feature

Best Place To Get Tattoo.If You Have To.Cover.Up.For.A.Job Uniqueness of Tribal Tattoos

You are searching about Best Place To Get Tattoo.If You Have To.Cover.Up.For.A.Job, today we will share with you article about Best Place To Get Tattoo.If You Have…

default-image-feature

Best Job For A Stay-At-Home Mom To Become Self Employed Best Work From Home Jobs

You are searching about Best Job For A Stay-At-Home Mom To Become Self Employed, today we will share with you article about Best Job For A Stay-At-Home…

default-image-feature

Best Book On Get A Job At 50 A Step-By-Step Career Book Review: Job Searching After 50 by Carol Silvis – A Mature Worker’s Competitive Advantage

You are searching about Best Book On Get A Job At 50 A Step-By-Step, today we will share with you article about Best Book On Get A…

default-image-feature

At My Job If You Do.It Well You Get To.Do.Other.Peoples.Jobs Actor Eric Sheffer Stevens: Auditioning For – And Getting Cast As – Reid on As the World Turns

You are searching about At My Job If You Do.It Well You Get To.Do.Other.Peoples.Jobs, today we will share with you article about At My Job If You…

default-image-feature

As-Machines-Take-Jobs-Companies-Need-To-Get-Creative-About-Making-New-Ones Why the Lack of Creativity Could Be Detrimental to Singapore’s Future

You are searching about As-Machines-Take-Jobs-Companies-Need-To-Get-Creative-About-Making-New-Ones, today we will share with you article about As-Machines-Take-Jobs-Companies-Need-To-Get-Creative-About-Making-New-Ones was compiled and edited by our team from many sources on the internet….

default-image-feature

Are Civil Service Jobs Hard To Get Site Www.City-Data.Com Forensic Valuation Firm – Expert Forensic Department

You are searching about Are Civil Service Jobs Hard To Get Site Www.City-Data.Com, today we will share with you article about Are Civil Service Jobs Hard To…