stepfamily dynamics


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 […]

Smiling Stepdad and Teen Son

Stepmom Achieving Peace at Christmas

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 […]


Blended with Baby

If you’re reading this you are not the first family. You are likely the second family, the blended family. You may have found your way into the family unit in the same way I did; single with no children of my own. Or perhaps you brought your own children from […]

Family with Newborn Baby

Stepfamily Having Fun

5 Things You Need to Know if You’re Dating a Man with Kids

As children, we often grow-up listening to fairy tales and promises of a happily-ever-after. However, with the high divorce rates these days, it may very well be that your prince charming turns out to be a divorced dad.   Getting into a relationship with a man who has kids means that […]


Wicked “Good” Stepmom

Children’s characters are all cute and sweet. You want to cuddle with Zimba, eat honey with Winnie the Pooh, or even jump in the arms of Bagera. But when animated stepmoms were created we get a whole new genre of character. Was it really the fault of the Queens’? If […]

Wicked Good Stepmom

Woman Contemplating

Hey Stepmom! Stop Taking it Personally

In my role as a stepfamily coach and the administrator of several stepmom support groups, I made a recent and painful self-discovery. I am guilty of a serious stepmom advice sin: telling a stepmom: “ Don’t take it personally” and I’ve said it many times to many women over my stepmom coaching […]


An Interview with Paulina Lagudi, Director of “Mail Order Monster”

Paulina Lagudi has written, produced and directed her first feature film aimed at highlighting the challenging yet, positive aspects of stepfamily life. Starring Charisma Carpenter of “Angel” and “Buffy”, and “The Expendables” and Josh Hopkins of “Cougar Town”, “Quantico”, and “Bones”, “Mail Order Monster” is predominantly told from the perspective […]

Mail Order Monster