How To Make a Blended Family Work

When a couple decides that their relationship is in a place to take the next step, and move in together, it can be a very exciting yet stressful time. What can make the transition even more stressful, is if you both have children from previous relationships. While it all worked out well when you were living apart, things can quickly change when you move in together. This is especially true if you have different parenting styles. There are a few things that you can do in order to make the transition easier, and prevent arguments down the line.

Create a Set of Rules For All of the Children to Follow

When you first move in together, it is important to set rules that all of the children will follow. Trying to have a separate set of rules for each child is a bad idea. It will not take long before parents and children are all fighting. Making one set of rules for all of the children to follow may be difficult if one parent is more lenient than the other. It will take a great deal of compromise on both parents part to make this work. The parent who is more strict will need to let go a bit and compromise. At the same time, the more lenient parent will need to make their rules a bit more strict, so that both parents are happy with the new set of rules.

Come to an Agreement on Discipline

When you first move in together, you should decide how disciplining will work. Some couples choose to allow both parents to discipline all of the children, and others choose to only discipline their own children. This is a decision which both parties agree upon.

If you choose to only discipline your own children, be careful. If you partner is constantly telling you that your child has done something wrong, it can cause issues in the relationship. When it comes to telling your partner that their child has done something wrong, you should pick your battles wisely. If you are complaining about the tiniest thing, it can cause a great deal of resentment.

Stay Out of the Children’s Arguments

Anyone who has a brother or a sister knows that there will be arguments. When children have arguments, parents typically stay out of it unless it becomes physical. You should do this if your child and your partner’s children fight. When you get in the middle, sides are often taken. This can lead to a problem in your relationship. Kids will be kids. It is best to let them handle it on their own.

Give it Time

Moving in with someone is a big step. It will take time to get used to the new living arrangement. The same is true for the children. You cannot expect things to run smoothly right away. It will take time for everyone to get used to the situation, and for everyone to find a way to learn to live together. Just be patient. Over time, things will fall into place and there will eventually be harmony in the home.

Changing the living situation for you and your children can be difficult. If you follow these tips, and keep the lines of communication open, it can be a happy and long lasting union.

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