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Stepfathers Are Greater Than Stepmothers

February 01, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 155

According to the U.S. Council on Contemporary Families there are five times as many stepfathers as stepmothers. Stepfathers are a majority. Really? Well, this data is based on census figures which excludes stepmothers not living in the same home with their children. This is usually the case for the majority of stepmothers who are partnered with the biological dad with limited visitation. Additionally, stepmothers are not always made by an official marriage but then neither are some stepfathers. Today, many divorced parents live together without getting remarried.

Some other compelling statistics:

· Of every 100 marriages in existence today, 46 involve a remarriage for one or both partners.

· About 65% of the remarriages involves children from the previous marriage. This number excludes children over 19, even though many adult children have stepmothers or stepfathers - the number of remarriages with stepchildren is even higher.

· Thirty-five% of teens report having a better relationship with their step dad than their biological father; only 16% is the reverse true.

Who do you think has the more stressful and demanding role - stepfather or stepmother? I think the stepmother has it. Here's why:

· Parental Responsibilities. Stepmothers handle many, if not all, of the responsibilities of the biological mom. A stepfathers' role is typically limited to that of breadwinner.

· Contact Time. Stepmothers usually don't have as much contact time with the stepchildren because of the biological dads' limited visitation schedule; holidays, weekends, etc. Stepmothers don't have as much time to develop a relationship with their stepchildren.

· Loyalty Conflicts. Stepmothers seem to have more challenges than stepfathers in relationships with their stepchildren. Some children feel they can't accept their stepmother without negatively affecting their relationship with their biological mom.

Whether you're a stepfather or stepmother, your role is respected and praiseworthy since you didn't have to be one. Out of love for your partner you made a decision to step in the gap left by the missing parent. If you're contemplating becoming a step parent, you should prepare by educating yourself before you accept responsibility. With nearly a 70% divorce rate for blended families, this is not a commitment to be taken lightly. The three most crucial things you can do to ensure your success in this role:

· Marriage First. The relationship with your partner is first and foremost. The biological parent should talk to their children about this change in their relationship. Present a unified front to your children when dealing with them. This is what you want your children to model in their future marriage.

· Parenting Styles. It is essential to understand the parenting style of you and your partner. You can take an online parenting quiz to determine your specific style. Knowing your respective styles will allow you to combine various aspects of your styles to a present a unified approach to parenting.

· Realistic Expectations. Many dating couples assume their first-marriage equipped them with everything they need to know to have a happy remarriage and parents who raised their own children assume they know how to be a step parent. Generally speaking, neither is the case.

There are resources available both on and off-line that can prepare you for the unique experiences, struggles and challenges that come with being a step parent. If you're a step parent already, you know what I'm talking about! If your goal is to become a step parent, it is crucial to educate and prepare yourself, so you can enter a blended family with your eyes wide open and with realistic expectations.

For men who didn't have to be - being a stepfather is a challenging and demanding role, and one that is not clearly defined. There is no standard operating procedures for stepfathers and having the best intentions and crossed fingers isn't enough to be successful. Studies show nearly 65% of all second marriages involve children but tragically almost 70% of these marriages will end in divorce often as a result of the added pressures step families face. Support for Stepfathers, http://www.supportforstepdads.com, is like "marriage insurance" - where you'll receive informative content, tools, unique insights and support that will help you be aware of and overcome the challenges unique to the blended family. Through this website, I want to share with you my experience, my lessons learned and the lessons learned from others. It is possible to be a successful stepfather and have a thriving blended family. Don't allow your family to become another statistic.

Source: EzineArticles
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