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Stepfamily Foundation, Inc.

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Locations
Stepfamily Foundation, Inc.
333 West End Ave.
New York, NY 10023
United States
Ads
Phone
(212) 877-3244
Fax
(212) 362-7030
Contact
Email contact form
Website
http://parenthood.library.wisc.edu/Bliss/Bliss.html



Stepfamily Foundation, Inc.

One out of two marriages ends in divorce. Sixty percent of second marriages fail, according to the U.S. Census Bureau 66% of marriages and living together situations end in break up, when children are actively involved, according to Stepfamily Foundation statistics. It is predicted that 50% of children in the US will go through a divorce before they are 18. Approximately half of all Americans are currently involved in some form of step relationship. By the year 2000, according to the Census Bureau, more Americans will be living in step families than in nuclear families.

In his 1994 study, "The Changing Character of Stepfamilies," Professor of Sociology Larry L. Bumpass of the University of Wisconsin challenges the common perception that the stepfamily is defined by marriage. His research states that:

  • About half of the 60 million children under the age of thirteen in this country are currently living with one biological parent and that parent's current partner.
  • Nearly half of all women, not just mothers, are likely to live in a stepfamily relationship, when we include living-together families in our definition of the stepfamily.

However, most graduate schools of psychiatry, psychology, and social work provide no specific training in dealing with these particular dynamics of stepfamilies. Often, the methods and information appropriate to the nuclear family can be destructive . . . if applied to the highly specific dynamics of the stepfamily system.

Rules for Stepfamilies from the Stepfamily Association:

  • Recognize that the stepfamily will not and can not function as does a natural family. It has its own special state of dynamics and behaviors. Once learned, these behaviors can become predictable and positive. Do not try to overlay the expectations and dynamics of the intact or natural family onto the stepfamily.
  • Super stepparenting doesn't work. Go slow. Don't come on too strong.
  • Discipline styles must be sorted out by the couple. The couple, ideally with the help of a Stepfamily Foundation trained professional, needs to immediately and specifically work out what the children's duties and responsibilities are. Generally, in the beginning, They suggest that the biological parent does the disciplining as much as is feasible. The couple together specifically works out jobs, expected behaviors and family etiquette.

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