Blended families or divorced parents have additional set of stresses than the original families, they have to deal with.
At times, there are history of trauma and guilt for how the original marriage ended. Other times, there are stresses related to their (sometimes adult) children.
Couples therapy help these individuals to explore and understand causal relationship between your and your children’s behaviors and the situation you live. Exploring and analyzing one’s thoughts, beliefs, and feelings, can help partners to understand one another and find ways to be on the same page, or at least understand that specific situation.
COMMUNICATION ISSUES – When you learn to master a way to communicate well with your partner, children, family, and friends, most of your problems will be diminished. Your psychotherapist can help you learn and practice this skill.
RELATIONSHIP WITH STEPCHILDREN – One of the most common issues with blended families, are the issues regarding child rearing. Who will discipline who? How the boundaries are put for the family? What are the consequences from breaking rules? Parents of blended families often times need support to organize the new (or not so new) formed family.
RELATIONSHIP WITH IN-LAWS and EX’s – As you don’t have enough issues to deal with within your close family circle, there may be ex’s, in-laws, ex-in-law that may be interfering in your new relationship. Knowing how to set boundaries is a skill you can learn with your psychologist.
RELATIONSHIP WITH EX’S FRIENDS – When you separated from your ex – what happened to your friends? Did you keep some? Did you ex keep some? How they interact with one another? And specially, how they interact with your new partner and the new formed family? Again, good communication between partners is important to establish health friends/family relationship.
FINANCES – So many bills, so much expenses – and demanding ex’s – how to balance them all? Can you clearly communicate with your new partner and your children the new financial system/needs in your household? What are their financial responsibilities to help the family?
REPEATING SAME MISTAKES – Unfortunately you bring to your new relationship the same old you. It is likely that you may repeat the same mistakes you committed prior. It could be lack of effective communication, not knowing to asking to have your needs fulfilled, or not knowing how to manage different areas in your life. Your psychologist can help you identify and modify old behaviors that may be damaging this new relationship.
Look for a good couples counseling or marriage therapist that can help you and your family, so that this could be your last time trying to form that family you always wanted.
Dr. Rosana Marzullo-Dove