Parental Alienation: Inside the March 2017 Issue

Parental Alienation - StepMom MagazineIs It Parental Alienation? Recognizing the Symptoms, Signs and Solutions by Kristan McLean, LCSW

I write this article to shed light to an important topic. I want you to know what parental alienation is. I want you to be able to recognize its signs and symptoms. I also want you to realize that, if you or your partner are being alienated against, it’s not OK and you are not alone. Continue reading “Parental Alienation: Inside the March 2017 Issue”

Teen Stepkids and Money: Inside the January 2017 Issue

Teen Stepkids and MoneyFinancing Your Stepkids’ Teen Years: Protect Yourself—and Your Savings—From the Teenage Money Pit by Mary T. Kelly, MA

Teens have been known, throughout the ages, to be reckless and careless with their possessions, their lives and those of other people. Some 2,300 years ago, Aristotle wisely said: “The young are heated by Nature, as drunken men by wine.” He should have added that their antics could end up costing a hell of a lot of money. Continue reading “Teen Stepkids and Money: Inside the January 2017 Issue”

Parenting Advice: Inside the December 2016 Issue

Parenting AdviceDad’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Days: Ways to Help Your Partner Parent Better by Mary T. Kelly, MA

“When I got out of bed this morning, I tripped on the skateboard and, by mistake, I dropped my sweater in the sink—while the water was running …. I think I’ll move to Australia.”

—excerpt from “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day,” by Judith Viorst

The opening excerpt is from a wildly popular children’s book that kids can relate to because, in truth, kids have bad days of their own. And, though your partner may not admit this, he has definitely experienced a slew of terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days, too—as a dad—and he doesn’t feel very good about it. Continue reading “Parenting Advice: Inside the December 2016 Issue”

Stepfamily Holiday Blues: Inside the December 2016 Issue

Stepfamily HolidayStepfamily Holiday Blues: Learning to Celebrate a Season for Two by Claudette Chenevert

IT’S CHRISTMAS MORNING. You wake up all excited but soon realize that this year is different. This Christmas will not be spent opening presents with your stepkids or even your own kids.

This Christmas it’s going to be just you and your spouse. A lump forms in your throat, as you think about it. You know it’s just another day, right? So what if you don’t have a houseful of squealing kids shouting “YES! I got my new phone!” or “Thanks for this gift. I really like it!”

Last year—for the first time, as we’re now parents of adult children—Bernard and I experienced Christmas without any of our kids. Continue reading “Stepfamily Holiday Blues: Inside the December 2016 Issue”

Parentified Stepchildren: Inside the November 2016 Issue

Parentified StepchildrenThe Parentified Child: When Stepkids Are Forced to Grow Up Too Fast
by Brenda Snyder, LCSW

When an intact family system reorganizes by death or divorce, every family member makes adjustments to the new structure. Unfortunately for the children, the adults are often so steeped in their own emotional pain that they are oblivious— through no real fault of their own—to the unhealthy accommodations their kids wind up making. While this is certainly not optimal for the adults, it can be devastating to the emotional health of their children.

It can be quite common, in one-parent families, for a child to hear that he or she is now the man or woman of the house. Continue reading “Parentified Stepchildren: Inside the November 2016 Issue”

Stepmoms and Rejection: Inside the October 2016 Issue

Stepmom RejectionStepmoms and Rejection: 5 Ways to Deal When You’ve Been Dissed by Mary T. Kelly, MA

Do any—or all—of these complaints ring a bell for you? They will if you suspect that the stepkids are none too thrilled with you:

⊲ “I’ve never felt so disliked or unwelcomed.”
⊲ “His ex hates me. Now? His kids hate me, too.”
⊲ “His kids were never warm, friendly or kind—despite my efforts.”
⊲ “My stepdaughter and I were close. She turned 13 and it all went sour.”
⊲ “My stepkids loved me before I moved in. They took a 180-degree turn after I unpacked my bags.” Continue reading “Stepmoms and Rejection: Inside the October 2016 Issue”

Stepfamily Secrets: Inside the October 2016 Issue

Stepfamily SecretsIs Your Stepfamily Lying to You? The Secrets Stepkids, Partners and Exes Keep by Claudette Chenevert

Many stepmoms get frustrated when their stepkids lie about one thing or another. The lies can be major, in an attempt to gloss over breaking curfew, doing drugs, drinking alcohol or stealing. They also can be a series of small lies related to homework, chores or anything else imaginable.

One of the reasons stepmoms seek my help is to deal with such situations. They’re simply not sure of how to handle lying—whether it’s their stepkids fibbing, their partners routinely omitting key information or the exes in their lives embellishing on reality until it’s unrecognizable. Continue reading “Stepfamily Secrets: Inside the October 2016 Issue”

Inside the September 2016 Issue

September 2016 Issue StepMom MagazineThe September 2016 issue of StepMom Magazine is HERE!

→ How to Survive Your Stepkids’ Emotional Ups and Downs
→ Advice from Stepmoms Who Married Widowers
→ Back to School Tips for You and Your Partner
→ Understanding the Stages of Stepfamily Development
→ False Accusations: One Stepmom’s True Story
→ The History of National Stepfamily Day (Yes, it’s real!)
→ Research Findings About Becoming a Stepparent
→ And much more!

Here’s what else you’ll find inside: Continue reading “Inside the September 2016 Issue”

Stepfamily Challenges: In the September 2016 Issue

Stepfamily ChallengesRiding the Stepfamily Roller Coaster: How to Survive Your Stepkids’ Emotional Ups and Downs by Brenda Snyder, LCSW

No relationship runs more hot and cold than the one you might have with a stepkid. Even less predictable than a high school romance, you can tuck in and kiss your stepdarling good night only to receive the cold shoulder the very next morning. Continue reading “Stepfamily Challenges: In the September 2016 Issue”

False Accusations: In the September 2016 Issue

False AccusationsFalse Accusations: A Stepcouple Relationship Faces the Ultimate Test by Mary T. Kelly, MA

I want to tell you the story of a couple I recently worked with. They’ve given me permission to share what they went through in the hopes that it may help you and others. It’s a story to which unfortunately many of you may relate. Continue reading “False Accusations: In the September 2016 Issue”