Good Afternoon World!!!!
Times have definitely changed and so have the traditional family dynamics. Traditional families still exist however blended families are steadily increasing and are becoming the new norm. In the US 40% of married couples with children are step couples according to Ron L. Deal (http://www.smartstepfamilies.com/view/statistics). The struggles of blended families are definitely real, “blended marriage divorce rate is approximately 67 percent” according to Ron Deal on the (http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/marriage-challenges/remarriage-and-blended-families/the-smart-blended-marriage). I personally was raised in a blended family and currently live in a blended with my husband.
The problems that stood out the most in my child hood household appeared to be marital issues that are normal between a traditional married couple. My father did an outstanding job in camouflaging my two oldest siblings having different fathers. They call him dad til this day and when my parents divorced for a while they lived with him whenever they wanted too (by the way my parents remarried for some reason lol crazy). My husband and I on the other hand face blended family issues.
I am overly protective of all my children and extremely sensitive to my two oldest the step children in the marriage. My husband being the only child does not have all the same traits as my father who is one of five children. Unfortunately, my husband gets chewed out by me sometimes and see the claws come out if I feel any unequal treatment happening. He is not a bad guy or a mean ogre to the children but here are a list of things I notice.
To me he appears to respond quicker to his biological kids (they are the youngest), he appears overly excited when talking to the two little ones more than my five year old, more flat tone when dealing with the five year old, annoyed quicker by my five year old than the two little ones, delightful greeting for the younger two when he gets home from work, more positive mood or interaction when interacting and because of this I am quick to bite his head off when he tries to check or correct my five year old bad behavior. My five year old loves him and looks up to him and I fear he may see a difference one day and feel some sort of way.
Now things to take into consideration my five year old has ADHD like me so he can get hyper. His attention span is short. He talks excessively and he demands attention constantly. So I do not think he is easy breezy and a saint but I do notice these differences in my husbands interactions sometimes and my three year old is a monster as well. This alone causes challenges in a marriage and add the other problems that all couples face on top of that. It is pretty amazing if blended families survive the marriage.
Trying to find your parental role in a blended family is challenging. Boundaries, expectations, and acceptance are huge issues in these marriages. A source to find helpful information for blended families is this site (http://www.helpguide.org/articles/family-divorce/step-parenting-blended-families.htm) there is always room for improvement especially in my household 😉 starting with me. If we could be like the Brady Bunch! lol
1st image http://www.vancouversun.com/cms/binary/7265939.%20jpg and second image Wikipedia (Brady Bunch)