Set some Boundaries!
To have a happy and healthy stepfamily you must know the importance of boundaries. Stepfamilies are difficult and many fail, often because of a lack of boundaries. Boundaries can be particularly troublesome for stepfamilies because they are very different from first families. In a typical nuclear household, family includes all members. In contrast, each member of a stepfamily can have a different idea of who is inside–and outside–the family circle. Close biological ties extend beyond the threshold when children have a parent who lives elsewhere. Whether they go back and forth between parental residences or not, their idea of family typically includes both parents. Conversely, one member of a step couple may exclude the other’s children from his or her emotional clan or a child may refuse to acknowledge a stepparent as a family member. An older child may refuse to identify with the newly formed stepfamily altogether. Healthy couples recognize boundary conflicts and work to resolve them.
A boundary is a limit you set as a means to protect yourself, your relationships and your family. By creating boundaries, you will protect your core needs and values. A lot of women are afraid to set boundaries for fear of upsetting others. By not setting boundaries, we end up accepting other people’s behaviours when we truly believe that they are unacceptable. YOU are allowing other people’s needs to come before yours.
To read more about setting boundaries, and Aimee's advice and tips (who doesn't need to set boundaries? *wink wink*), login to the Social Stepmom Society now!