Stepping Up: Step One
Hey Everyone, this is the first in a five part series created by Mike and Kim Anderson centered around the dynamics of parenting a step family. We hope you enjoy, and if you know anyone that could benefit from this series please pass it on!
"I didn't sign up for this!" - If you've been a part of a stepfamily for a while...you may have uttered these words or something like them along your journey. Stepfamily life can be challenging...it can be overwhelming...sometimes, downright miserable!
Kim and I have found over the years that stepfamily life can also be peaceful...it can be stable...it can even be fun and joyful! To find this kind of peace and stability, step-couples must be intentional in discovering what unique dynamics influence their stepfamily. They need to be purposeful in learning to influence those dynamics in a positive direction.
You're Not Alone
We often hear step-couples wonder:
- Why do all these relationships have to be so hard?
- Do I really need to prioritize our partnership over my kids?
- Why can't his/her kids just get on board?
- When is my Ex (or my partner's Ex) going to cooperate?
Did you know that over 100 million Americans have some kind of step-relationship? Or that 1 in 3 marriages are forming stepfamilies in our culture today? Millions of people are wrestling with a countless number of these kinds of questions. These are your neighbors, your co-workers and family facing similar challenges.
We Get It
Kim and I have faced many of the pressures of stepfamily life. The relational pressure of trying to connect with my step-daughter...Kim often being stuck in the middle when we struggled. The marital pressure that emerged because of the hurts and hang-ups of previous relationships. The financial pressure that came along with a three year family court battle. The emotional pressure of watching the toll that battle took on our daughter. Seven years into marriage, these pressures and several more brought us to the brink of divorce.
We are on the other side of those pressures today. We have weathered many storms. We're moving forward with more confidence in our ability to weather other storms to come.
Along the way we've had the opportunity to learn from experts in stepfamily dynamics. We've gotten to lead and support other step-couples just like you in learning how to intentionally influence specific dynamics that move stepfamilies closer to experiencing peace and stability in their homes.
The focus of this blog is to share with you hidden dynamics and common challenges that step-couples face. And more importantly to give you simple, clear strategies that will help you face those challenges well. Our goal is to educate, encourage and equip you to move your stepfamily forward in your journey of building peace and stability in your home.
If you enjoyed the article above and want to learn more about Mike and Kim or need help in navigating step-family dynamics, please visit: www.MikeandKimCoaching.com