A couple of years ago, Brendan came in to see me following the untimely death of his wife. More recently, he paid me a visit all aglow; he had met the "woman of his dreams." I was delighted for Brendan who hadn't believed he could find a new partner. Laura, also divorced, had two children, 8 and 10, from her previous marriage. Brendan had yet to meet Laura's children but he was sure that his love for Laura would carry him through any trials and tribulations when he did. Emotional Intelligence: Not Just For Relationships
Brendan didn't realize that no matter how much in love with Laura he was, stepparenting can throw cold water on even the best of romantic relationships. As we talked, it became clear that he, like most folks, bought into some false assumptions about life as a stepparent. Here are some stepparenting misconceptions I commonly encounter:
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- You assume that you and your partner's views about parenting and discipline will be in sync.
- You take for granted that your partner will speak up if his or her kids are disrespectful to you.
- You believe that your partner will know how to balance your needs with those of his or her children.
- You believe that the kids will easily accept discipline from you.
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