It is probably true to say that blended families are becoming more and more common in Ireland, as they are in the rest of the world. Divorce, re-marriage, or no marriage and children being part of relationships at all levels can lead to a complicate family dynamic.
Larger Family Units
When a new baby comes into a family, where one or both parties already have children, a blended family comes into being. Larger family units can bring great happiness, but it may also create uncertainty and an adjustment period for children and adults alike.
For example, there may be disharmony between a mother and step-mother around discipline, nutrition, chores, curfews etc. The children may also get caught in the crossfire of a family conflict.
Parents may need to agree the means to be employed in disciplining their children – both the natural children and the step children – and may need to agree different rules for each other in relation to this. It is a tightrope, and needs to be approached with caution. A well thought out plan will help.
Blended Families Mediation
A mediator can help to identify the potential pitfalls, to think through the issues, to interrogate all the options, and to develop a plan of action into the future.
Look for a mediator who has experience in dealing with matters relating to blended families.