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Blended Family Counselling

Blended Family Counselling

Blended families, often referred to as stepfamilies, arise when parents from previous relationships come together, bringing their children into a shared home. This new family constellation can include half-siblings, step-siblings, and stepparents. While merging two families can present its unique challenges, it also offers a world of love, growth, and unique experiences for everyone involved.


We can assist with assessment and treatment of various issues, including:

  • Building relationships
  • Communication skills
  • Establishing a new family dynamic
  • Adapting to change
  • Managing Ex-partners
  • Establishing a sense of belonging
  • Family roles
  • Consistency and Discipline
  • Different parenting styles
  • Addressing perceived favouritism
  • Cultivating a united front

The benefits of creating a loving Stepfamily

Creating a loving, healthy stepfamily is possible but takes time and effort. The key is recognising each family member’s different histories, emotions, values, and expectations. Some of the unique features of stepfamily life include:

Loyalty conflicts and struggles. In a nuclear family, both parents are strongly invested in the welfare of their biological children. But this isn’t the case in a stepfamily. You have unbalanced loyalty triangles as well as divided allegiances between mother and stepmother or father and stepfather.

No roadmap. There can be a sense that you have to make it up as you go along because things don’t always go as planned. Being part of a stepfamily is not part of most people’s vision for their family.  At times, it feels like a family, but at other times it doesn’t.

Progress is slow: crock pot speed rather than microwave speed. According to James Bray, stepfamily expert, “the adaptation to stepfamily relationships depends on the timing of the transition in the children’s lives, the individuals involved, and the unique changes and stresses presented to the group.

Love is not instant. A common misconception is that a stepparent and stepchild will love each other instantly or at least grow to love each other. This happens in some cases, but sometimes a stepparent and stepchild don’t like each other. While they can learn to live together in a respectful way, a close and loving relationship might not happen. Although you may love your partner, you may not love your partner’s children automatically. It’s OK to feel differently about your partner’s child.