I know well how frustrating and painful stepfamily relationships can be; I was there! I just celebrated the 17th anniversary of my “remarriage with children”, now a successful stepfamily. My husband and I each brought one child into the mix (my son was 7 and his daughter 5 when we started dating). Even with all my training in psychology and coaching (link to Truwell Technology), stepfamily life threw me for a loop; there were times we felt it was hopeless!
We got caught up in many of the dynamics that are classic in stepfamilies (“my kid vs. your kid”, rivalry between stepdaughter and stepmom, difficulties with an ex-spouse, and on and on) until the anxiety level got so high, and there was so much alienation, we sought family counseling. Unfortunately, as often happens with counselors not trained specifically to deal with stepfamilies, it made the situation worse, and I felt totally unsupported. Over time, we became a strong couple, and eventually a strong family – but it was not an easy journey!
After my children were nearly grown, I discovered the Stepfamily Foundation in New York, and trained with Jeannette Lofas, PhD as a coach, and then as a master coach. I discovered principles that would have saved us years of painful “figuring out”. Utilizing this training, as well as excellent material from the Stepfamily Resource Center and a number of books now available on this subject, I have developed a training class for stepfamilies. I want to start you on a path to greater harmony and understanding for your family.
Stepfamilies operate by a different set of rules; and awareness of these rules takes much of the blame out of the picture, and starts you on a positive path. I take a holistic, systems-oriented approach, helping parents and children understand the specific dynamics that are common to stepfamily relationships. I provide tools to help you address your issues in a practical, goal-oriented way, and help you assess your strengths and utilize them.
The combination of my background as a life coach, my extensive training in human development and social psychology, management experience for fifteen years, as well as nine years as a single mom, and seventeen years as a stepmom, and years of providing personal development workshops and classes, all come together to provide you with a learning experience in Creating a Successful Stepfamily, that can set your family on a course for success!