Because of the significant rates of divorce and remarriage in the United States, the stepfamily is becoming an increasingly mainstream way of life alongside the traditional nuclear family structure. When people of various age groups and backgrounds are suddenly brought together to cohabitate, specific guidelines will be necessary in order to navigate the complexities of these new relationships.
The Combined Family: A Guide to Creating Successful Step-Relationships is an essential guide for understanding an individuals multiple family roles as well as the emotional and psychological nuances within step-relationships. Taube Kaufman, a clinician with expertise in stepfamily counseling, sensitively prescribes both preventative and restorative means to help alleviate the psychological stigma of living within a socially unaccepted form of family. This authoritative guide will undoubtedly help individuals to discover and prepare for the differences they can expect to encounter in moving from one family structure to another, such as: introducing a prospective new marriage partner to ones children- deciding on appropriate wedding and honeymoon plans- establishing rapport with stepchildren- coping with sibling and stepsibling rivalries- devising successful strategies to deal with former marriage partners and extended family members- arranging holiday and family celebrations- and allocating enough time and space for the newlyweds to form a strong couple bond in a family system where at least one parent and child have an emotional attachment and history that predate the marriage.
A compelling series of experiences and observations by family members offered by Kaufman is indicative of her unwavering empathy for stepparents and children who inherit roles that are ambiguous, ill defined, and laced with negative connotations.