Extending blended families

Extending blended families

A lot of blended families try to make things “work” better by adding a new baby to the mix. But the truth is that extending blended families isn’t always the best idea, and a new baby can either make or break a stepfamily. The arrival of a new baby can trigger all sorts of unpredictable responses within the family dynamic. And more often than not, it affects the kids way more than it shows the commitment of the parents.

 

How moms can expect to feel when extending blended families

It’s normal to feel anxious and excited about the arrival of a new baby within your blended family dynamic. You might be worried that your biological child will feel left out once the baby arrives, but keep in mind that these fears and anxiety is perfectly normal. They happen to moms expecting their second babies too, and those are moms in “normal” family dynamics.

 

How your kids might react

As if it wasn’t enough upheaval when you guys decided to “blend” two families together, you’re now tasking your kids with accepting yet another major change in their lives. They might resent the idea of having to share your attention even more. Some kids might be super excited to welcome a new half-brother or sister into this world. Whatever you do, it’s essential that you tell the kids about what’s going on before they establish for themselves. Which leads us to the next point:

 

When should you tell the kids?

Depending on the age of your kids, you might want to wait until the three month mark has passed and you’re starting to show visible signs of pregnancy. Obviously you should speak to your partner about the right time to tell the kids as well.

 

The effects of a new baby on stepfamilies

New babies can make life within the stepfamily dynamic a little more challenging. Consider the fact that the youngest child in your family will now become the middle child. Your kids might also feel like they’ll all get less attention once the baby arrives. Ultimately, adult concern and attention will be diverted from existing kids and instead focused on the baby, and the kids will pick up on that. Although it may not be true across the board, this is generally what happened. Kids get upset, and unless you talk it through with them, things can go south pretty darn fast.

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By Jess Green

Jess is a happy father and avid supporter of kiddles, writing occasionally and keeping the website afloat. His favourite kids activity is hiking and teaching kids about nature.

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