stepfamily dynamics


From the File of Difficult Conversations: Planning Family Vacations

Among my stepmom files is a folder labeled “Difficult Conversations.” It’s one of those expandable file folders and, just over four years in, it’s already overflowing. This folder could also be aptly named, “Surprise! Stepparenting is Hard!” because (a) it is, and (b) this, somehow, still surprises me. Despite a […]

Family Vacation

Kids’ Rooms in the Step-Dynamic

One of the reasons I wanted to contribute a lifestyle section to Stepparent magazine was because there are so many nuances and subtleties to stepfamily life that aren’t covered by conventional lifestyle advice. One of these is kids’ rooms, especially kids who aren’t full time in your home. How do […]


The 4 S’s – Personality Types in Step-Families

If our children are to approve of themselves, they must first see that we approve of ourselves.(Maya Angelou ‘Rainbow in the Cloud’ 2014) In my experience, one of the things that helps get me back on track when I am feeling I can do nothing ‘right’, is to remind myself […]


Stepmom Feeling Insecure

Why Step-Moms Get Jealous & Insecure in the Most Stable Relationships

One of the things I see step-moms struggle with over and over is feeling jealous and insecure when it comes to the ex. We know in our heads it doesn’t make sense. We know in our hearts our men love us. We know that our men chose us day after […]


Individual Hurt, Our Collective Good

Enjoy the journey and adventure with your stepfamily, starting with you. YOU are the one that has the power to create the life and family you have always dreamed of. The pain is to season that passionate, powerful person you were destined to be. Listen as we share our own […]

Stepfamily Concept

Smiling Stepdad and Teen Son

The Stepdad, Pillows And Fish Tacos

I was a 14-year old 8th grader. I put my finger in my stepdad’s face. He was twice my size. We were in our new, San Diego living room…his living room. And with everything I had, I spouted,   “FUCK YOU!”  I was ready to punch him. I wanted to fight […]


Contending with Chaos to Create Christmas Peace

Now that the season of bright lights and big expectations is here, it is a good time to share a few ways to help you manage the stress and anxiety this time of year often brings for stepfamilies. There are so many competing priorities and responsibilities. We often find ourselves stretched with […]

Stepmom Achieving Peace at Christmas