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What are some tips for managing conflict in a blended family?

A:

Quick Answer

Some tips for managing conflict in a blended family are to create realistic expectations for discipline and relationships and identify intentions early in the new family's history. Parents should also clearly communicate with children about rules and expectations.

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Full Answer

Children in blended families need time to adjust to changes. Parents should discuss expectations for who bears responsibility for the discipline of each child and what that discipline might include. Parents should not expect too much from children, especially when it comes to showing affection to a new parent.

Similarly, parents should discuss each parent's intentions for the family and try to come to an agreement on the family's goals. If one person wants a loving family and the other parent wants stepchildren to leave home as soon as possible, the family is set up for conflict. Maintain consistent rules for all of the children involved and make sure the children know the family rules.

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