Advice For Blended Families

Serving Clients Throughout Sonoma, Mendocino, Lake, and Napa Counties

If you have children, you will continue to be in close contact with your former spouse. Together you two will have to face new challenges as co-parents. One of the more unique circumstances during this time is how new people will be brought into your family.

Either you, your spouse or both of you may begin new relationships. When this happens, there will be people around your children that you will have to interact with. Though emotions will run high, everyone needs to put the child first. But that doesn’t mean you have to suffer. Nor does it say that this can’t be a positive experience. Here are some tips for making that happen.

Focus On What You Can Control

There are probably a lot of reasons why you and your former spouse are no longer together. You may not even get along. And there could be a lot of things that get you upset.

None of those things determine how you respond and act around your former spouse. You need to focus on building a better relationship for the sake of your children. Instead of getting upset about the way you were spoken to, think about what you can do to heal the relationship. It will only benefit your children if they see their parents respecting one another.

This extends to whomever your ex is dating or marrying. Regardless of how you feel about it, these are the people who will be around your children. No matter your personal feelings, remember that nothing positive will come out of a negative interaction.

New House, Same Rules

Your children will spend time in your house and your former spouse’s house. Strive to find ways to provide structure—and do so at both places. Here are some ways to do that:

  • A set bedtime
  • The same rules for screen time
  • Chore schedules (e.g., washing dishes, cleaning their rooms)
  • Dinner time and table manners

Though it may be easy to throw all the rules out for the sake of enjoyment and fun, children crave structure. You want your children to see that their parents are a good team instead of one parent being the fun one.

A Tool For Blended Families

Blended families have stepparents and even new siblings—the more variables, the greater the chance for new challenges. Have a standard way of communicating. Some people prefer email over texting because it isn’t as immediate. But find a way to channel your communications politely and civilly. This will only enhance your ability to handle conflict and discover new resolutions.

Carroll Law Office

Divorce is a complex matter, and at the Carroll Law Office, we strive to simplify it for you. If you are about to start the divorce process—or have already begun it—contact us to schedule your free consultation. Our attorneys are here to develop a customized legal solution for your unique circumstances.

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