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The Remarried Life


Jun 11, 2019

Brian Mayer talks about why blended two families together after previous divorces is so hard.  There are so many things at play that occur in the situation that don’t occur in a first marriage.  We will talk about these and some of what you can do to make this easier on yourself and others in the family.  We hope you enjoy today’s message.  For more information and additional resources please visit our website at http://www.theremarriedlife.com

Today's Goodies

  • We say it all the time.  Getting married again after divorce is HARD.  It is hard for many reasons and researchers say it can take many years to feel like a biological nuclear family and in some cases it will never feel that way. 
  • Today we talk about the factors that get in the way of feeling good about blending. 
    • Let’s start with genetics.  There are more opportunities for different personalities to be present in a blended family because you all do not come from the same family tree. 
    • There were different life experiences for each family.  Maybe there was abuse present in your past experience and not in your spouse’s past or vice versa. 
    • The general expectations of one or more family members that this new experience will go exactly like the previous one.  Families are like fingerprints and no two are exactly the same.
    • Shuttling kids between families is probably not normal to anyone and thus gaining a comfort level for this back and forth is so difficult to achieve.    
    • A more rigid structure in one family and a more relaxed structure in the other family can often cause issues.  There will often be arguments about bedtimes, dinner planning and prep, and when schoolwork and chores and tasks get done. 
    • Getting caught in the middle when the other family is involved.  It is common for the biological parent to feel caught in the middle of the other ex-spouse and the current spouse and the differing needs of each.  Often the current spouse will often feel like an outsider.  As a result often resentment can build. 
    • Your parents or your spouses parents may have better feelings about an ex-spouse.  In many situations, the ex-spouse might be invited to things that make it very uncomfortable for you or maybe you have a general sense that the ex-spouse is liked better than you. 
    • Anger of the kids about their biological parents splitting can often last through their entire childhood.  Gulp!    
    • Finances can cause problems.  This issue can come from all sorts of areas.  Maybe there is a lack of trust between you and your spouse because of past hurts and so you keep finances very divided.  Maybe there are constant disagreements about what family pays for what in a blended family. 
    • Disparate feelings about parenting and discipline.  One of you wants to trust then verify and the other wants to verify then trust.  One believe is more harsh consequences and the other believes in light consequences.  The issue becomes that you both feel right about your position.
  • So what in the heck can you do about this?  We could literally spend all day talking through each one of those and in fact we have done past episodes where we have dug deeper on most of these issues.  If we tried to get a response to each of these it could be overwhelming
    • So….Take a Breath.  In fact take a deep breath!  You are good enough.  You are in the right place at the right time.
    • Step back from the Trees to Look at the Forest.  We often get so caught up in the day to day mess and craziness that we often don’t assess the overall picture and how much we have actually accomplished. 
    • Control what you can and give the rest over to God.   This is hard if you are prone to anxiety, obsessive compulsiveness, or perfectionism.  You cannot control the attitudes and moods of everyone in the house nor should you have to.
    • Where is the Balance?  Typically women want to take responsibility for too much and men typically don’t take enough responsibility.  The two of you need to discuss where you are with this and determine where you fall short and then work to better come together. 
    • When it comes to your Wants and Needs and your partners, have a discussion that centers around the following:
      • Express Your Needs and Wants
      • When You Hear Those Needs and Wants state gently whether you can meet that need, meet it with some changes, or that you cannot meet that need. 
      • If you can meet a need, then do it!  If you can meet it with some negotiation then the two of you should work on that now.  If you cannot meet it, then you need to ask can you both live with it not being met or is it a deal breaker for the relationship
  • Ultimately, there is a lot of moving parts in a blended family and it will often feel like juggling flaming swords.  You are not alone in what you are feeling and experiencing.  Again just remember you are in the right place at the right time with the right people. 

  

 

Resources:

  • None Mentioned Today

Thanks For Listening!

  • With so many things that take time in our lives, I more grateful than you know that you took time to listen to this podcast episode. 
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As always remember that marriage is not something you have, it is something you do.  Talk to you next week unless you are binge listening in the future in which case I will talk to you in about a minute!  Take care.