Developing a relationship with your stepchildren can be difficult. While you may be excited to be a new member of the family and make connections, your stepchildren may see you as a reminder of their parent’s divorce. They also may also view you as a sign that their mother and father are not going to reunite. Through sensitivity and patience, however, you can start building a healthy relationship with your new stepchildren. Here is how:
If you and your spouse are considering a divorce, you may not know how best to proceed. Hiring an attorney can be expensive, but the divorce process is complicated, and going it on your own could lead to costly mistakes. What is your best option? If you and your spouse are willing to work together through your divorce process, and are hoping to keep your case out of court, consider mediation. Through mediation, couples can amicably reach a divorce agreement they both agree upon, without the conflict and expense of a typical litigated divorce. As an added plus, mediation typically tends to take less time, allowing couples to quickly finalize their divorce and move on.
Every so often, the US government surveys thousands of teenagers and young adults, gathering their opinions on changes to American family life. They ask respondents for their thoughts on a number of matters including single parenting, cohabitation, gay marriage, and divorce. This year’s data, released recently by the National Center for Health Statistics, may surprise people. While younger Americans are becoming increasingly more accepting of gay relationships, single parenting, and cohabitation before marriage, they are less accepting of divorce when compared to past generations. Divorce has become more common with each new generation of Americans, and now around half of all marriages in the United States end in divorce. Why this sudden shift in opinion?
According to the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, some 10 million children in the United States are witnesses to domestic violence between their parents or guardians each year. Parents often believe that children are not affected by domestic violence occurring within the home, but that assumption could not be more false. Even if a child does not witness the abuse in person, simply living in an abusive environment can be harmful. In fact, domestic violence within a home can affect children in many negative ways. Children living around abuse are more likely to be abused themselves, become abusers later in life, and may suffer from many other emotional and behavioral problems.