Separation/Divorce & Remarriage/Blended Families
This week’s topics were really heartbreaking for me. As we discussed the negative effects of divorce and the potential problems that can and typically do arise when divorced parents remarry, I hurt for those people who have experienced these heartaches! I have a few members in my family who have suffered from the effects of divorce and have had to make lots of adjustments to their lives because of it. Although it has definitely been a challenge to all those involved, I feel that our situations are at the mild end of the spectrum in comparison with the experiences that were shared in class and the family that we studied. Learning about the family system and how essential healthy family boundaries are has been really influential in my life by how I see the world and how I approach and seek to resolve problems. I feel that it is a great tool that if utilized, can help you detect the red flags in a relationship that you or a loved one is in, and to stop things before they go too far. Knowing how family systems work can and acting on that knowledge can save marriages and families in so many ways! But from what we see in the world today, divorce and blended families are becoming the norm not the exception. Therefore it is necessary to address ways to cope with the challenges of blending families. Some of the tips for blended families to be aware of were:
1) It takes a minimum of 2 years to gain normalcy. (That doesn’t mean everything will be “just the way it was before” or that things will be perfect! I just means that the members involved will be more able to predict behavior and know how to respond appropriately.)
2) The birth parent should be the one to give heavy discipline to the children
3) The step parent should be more like a good/great aunt or uncle to the children (So they should be supportive of birth parent but listen and sympathize with the child).
4) New remarried couples should conference with each other DAILY behind closed doors. (They need to discuss how things are going, what changes need to happen and I think there should be emphasis on the “CLOSED DOORS”. The discussions need to be between the new spouses, not in front of the children and not including any other family members so that the spouses can learn to rely on one another and make things work.)
(from the book, “Helping the Remarried Family”)
I felt that those tips were very interesting and insightful! I can definitely see how following those steps consistently could really make a difference for the better! I am grateful for this knowledge! I hope to never have to experience divorce, but I hope that I can use this knowledge to be a source of support and comfort to those that have experienced divorce and blending families.