January « 2008 « Stepcoupling

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IN THE NEWS…PAINFUL BUT VALUABLE LESSON

January 30th, 2008

I’ve been following the recent news story about the 12 year old boy whose divorced parents are vigorously fighting over whether or not he will be circumcised. Dad, says yes: Mom says no. They’re relying on attorneys and the courts to decide.

What a sad state of affairs! How would you like to be that boy? – tossed back and forth between his biological parents fighting over a life decision this powerful and incredibly sensitive. The worst is he can’t possibly decide for himself and feel good about it, because his parents won’t let him.

Years ago I worked in a residential treatment center for emotionally and behaviorally disturbed children. Before my very eyes, I witnessed vulnerable children being torn in half by their angry parents. I saw beautiful, smart, happy children emotionally deteriorate because of the pressure of being caught in the middle of their parents’ fights. It broke my heart to see kids in horrible no-win situations over which they had no control.

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT

January 10th, 2008

TRADITIONAL COUPLING:

“The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach,” the expression goes.

Simple: Learn how to cook.

STEPCOUPLING:

“The way to their hearts is through the children”.

Not so simple: Learn how to build positive and genuine relationships with the stepchildren.

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2008: CREATING NEW AND IMPROVED RELATIONSHIPS

January 3rd, 2008

Finally the holidays are over. Every year I breathe a sigh of relief. I stay in my bathrobe, bail out the house, and eat leftovers . . . alone.

Some holidays have been better than others. In the early years being Super Mom and Stepmom, I tended to take responsibility for EVERYTHING that went wrong. I was always monitoring and soothing hurt feelings and mediating fights. Yea, it was hard work, and always more stressful during the holidays.

A few holiday memories still stand out for me – some joyful, some humorous and some painful.

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