Don’t Let The Myths Get You Down
There are so many blending family myths out there—thoughts that cast dark shadows on the redemptive work God can do in a remarriage that is under His control. Sure, remarriage and blending a family is definitely more complex. But it can also be a place of healing, hope, and redemption like none other. So I’d like to address a few of these, just to bring a little perspective to the topic and to bring remarrying couples some blending family hope.
The myth of being forever broken: When a marriage ends, whether through death or divorce, there are hurts, healing, and adjustments to be made. But research shows that eighty percent of children do heal and recover—if they journey through it surrounded by love and security. So provide that safe haven, and hang in there for the long haul.
The myth of a seamless adjustment: When couples remarry, they often have on rose-colored glasses. They think it’ll be simple, happy, and carefree, and they are optimistic that they will quickly become a “family”. But the truth is, just as it takes years to become good friends with another person, it may take years for blending family relationships to form, bonding to happen, and trust to be established. The first two years may be the hardest, but statistics show that five years after a remarriage, the blending family is most often happy and stable. Patience, realistic expectations, and unconditional love are good rules of thumb.
The myth of the wicked stepparent: We’ve heard it in fairy tales and seen it in movies. But, most often, that’s a lie. Most stepparents desperately want to bond with their stepchildren. They want to love them, meet their needs, and become family. So when you see this myth in the media, call it what it is. Bring it to the attention of everyone, and dispel this ugly lie.
The myth of the deadbeat dad: Many, if not most fathers long to be with their children, provide for them, and remain a vital part of their lives. While some are aloof and uncaring, be careful not to cast this myth on your ex if he’s not and be sure you don’t expect your new husband to become aloof from his children because he now has a “new” family. Encourage dads to be involved, even affirm them for the steps they take to be close to their children.
What other myths do you face as a blending family? I’d love to know.
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