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Teachermomoftwo
Teachermomo... asks:
Q:

I am divorced with two girls (2, 3). How will a new baby in a few years affect my girls in a blended family? Will they resent the baby?

I have been divorced/separated since by girls were 1 1/2 and 6 months old. My girls will never remember us together. I have full custody over my girls and the girls have visitation with their dad every other weekend. I have been with my boyfriend for a year and the girls adore us together- so far so good. We have talked about having another child in the future-4 years from now -and I am wondering what ramifications it might have on my two little girls. I would love to have a blended family someday but my boyfriend thinks this might confuse the children. They know their daily routine and their visiting time with their dad, but could this be problematic?
In Topics: Parenting / Our Family, Blended families, Divorce Issues
> 60 days ago

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Expert

ShirleyCressDudley
Feb 23, 2013
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What the Expert Says:

It's good you are thinking about this in advance. Your girls will respond the way you teach them to respond.

If you anticipate the new baby with excitement and joy, telling them that she/he will be a new member of the family- your girls will be excited too.  Providing some 1 on 1 time with them, once the baby has arrived is another thing- so that all the attention is not focused on the baby.

When the girls are ready to head to their daddy's house for a visit and they wonder why little sister/brother is not going- you can explain it to them.  The baby's mommy and daddy live here. Your daddy lives in another house. So  - you travel back and forth so you can be with your mommy and daddy, who both love you. Your little sister/brother's parents are both in this house, so he won't be going back and forth.

I would encourage you, on the weekends the girls are visiting their dad, for you and your boyfriend/husband to have some couple time. Get a sitter so that you can enjoy some time together.

Blended families are a little more difficult, but well worth the trouble. The girls will learn how to respond and react from your emotions and your instruction to them.

I wish you the very best.

Shirley Cress Dudley, MA LPC NCC FACMPE
Executive Director of The Blended and Step Family Resource Center
Author of the best selling book, Blended Family Advice
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