Stepfamilies may not see their reality mirrored in the remake of “Yours, Mine & Ours” or the blissfully sappy Brady bunch, but the truth is – stepfamilies are all around us. Let’s take a look at the statistics and how things are changing.
Stepfamilies represent a large chunk of the population. More people today in the United States live in stepfamilies, than in nuclear families. One in three Americans today is part of a stepfamily – we are stepparents, stepchildren, stepsiblings, and more. In one decade, from 1980 to 1990, the number of stepfamilies increased by more than 35%.
We have a positive view of marriage, but our marriages are under stress from the demands of stepfamily life. Although one or both spouses in a stepfamily is previously married (and subsequently widowed or divorced), we continue to believe that marriage is worth emotionally investing in. Seventy-five per cent of the people divorcing today will eventually remarry and 43% of all marriages today are remarriages.
The first four years in a stepfamily can be especially conflict-prone. Researchers point out that among ethnic groups, such as Asian-Americans and whites, where stepfamily life is less institutionalized and less “the norm,” marriages that form stepfamilies experience significant stress.
Keep reading this post at The StepFamily Life.com