Doing Life Together

blmededBob and Rose are a blended family now. They are asking for ways to make the holidays better in terms of that blending. Here are 10 tips:

  1. Examine your expectations and  let go of any  “Brady Bunch” fantasies. Most disappointments come from unrealistic expectations.
  2. Continue “old” holiday traditions with your biological kids while creating new ones with the stepfamily. This helps the children ease into the new.
  3. If the kids don’t feel the holiday cheer, try to see the world from their point of view. They have lost the old and are adjusting to the new. Eventually, they will adjust.
  4. Practice the fine art of silence when your stepfamily is stressed by the holidays. You don’t have to share all your negative feelings.
  5. Don’t compete with your children’s “other” parents by showering kids with expensive gifts.
  6. Stepmoms, reach out to your stepkids’ mother. Buy her a gift. Tell her you appreciate her children. (OK, this is optional!)
  7. Don’t fight with ex-spouses about how much time you will spend with children over the holidays. It only hurts the children
  8. Invite your ex-spouses over for a holiday party. Brace for surprises.
  9. Join a stepparent support group to share the many feelings about “family” that come up during the holiday season.
  10. Pray and be patient. Blending takes on average, 2-4 years of adjustment time.
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