In today's complicated stepfamily, the stepmom often doesn't know where to turn for help. Let stepfamily expert Ron Deal and experienced stepmom Laura Petherbridge show you how to survive and thrive as a stepmom, including:
How to be a positive influence on children who are torn between loyalty to their biological mom and to you.
What to do when you feel ostracized, rejected, or lonely.
When and how to step back during conflict and let your husband take the lead.
How to handle holidays, adult stepchildren, between-home communication, and much more.
Here is the hope, encouragement, and practical information to assure you that you are not alone in the stepmom journey.
|Publisher:||Baker Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)|
About the Author
Laura Petherbridge is an international speaker and author of When "I Do" Becomes "I Don't": Practical Steps for Healing During Separation and Divorce. She has been featured on FamilyLife Today, HomeWord, and the Crown Financial Ministries' radio broadcast. Laura is featured on the DivorceCare video series, used by over 12,000 churches worldwide and has taught on divorce recovery at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando. Laura and her husband, Steve, reside in Lady Lake, Florida.
Table of Contents
Section 1 The Smart Stepmom: Who Is She?
Chapter 1 Can You Hear Me Now? 19
Chapter 2 Can I Run Away From Home? 33
Chapter 3 The Wicked Stepmother: Did Disney Have Me in Mind? 51
Chapter 4 Understanding His Kids (Part 1): Loss, Grief, and Troubling Emotions 65
Chapter 5 Understanding His Kids (Part 2): Loyalty 83
Chapter 6 Partnering: Stepparenting Beside the Engaged or Disengaged Father 102
Section 2 Getting Smart: The Stepparenting Team
Chapter 7 Dad Smart (Part 1): She Can't Do It Without You 125
Chapter 8 Dad Smart (Part 2): Pitfalls and Good Intentions 140
Chapter 9 Meet Your Ex-Wife-in-Law: Friend or Foe? 155
Chapter 30 Understanding Your Kids: What Do They Need? 176
Chapter 11 Kodak Moments: Vacations, Holidays, Mother's Day, and Special Occasions 194
Chapter 12 Adult Stepchildren 216
Chapter 13 Baby Steps: Should We Have an "Ours" Baby? 241
Chapter 14 Smart Love 256
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Such a challenging topic - but so common for so many people. We keep hearing the negative reports about the number of divorces as well as the number of widowed people - individuals who find themselves alone, while trying to be the best parent they can be. Then it happens, they find love again, marry and start anew - but with even more "obstacles" because of previous "ties:" such as past relations and connections. Enter The Smart Stepmom which can help in so many ways, when the "new person" enters the family, trying to fit in, learning all the "eccentricities" of this new life, while keeping her individuality intact - quite the balancing act - and perhaps this guide can be a type of safety net to help make this situation become a more beautiful and stronger family with a great future ahead.
I became a stepmom earlier this year. I¿m already a mother to a 6 year old, but adding another child (a 7 year old) to the household came with its own set of issues. And being a stepmother can be particularly difficult; you love a child so much, but that child feels guilty if he allows himself to love you back because he feels like he¿s betraying his birth mother. A new personality, a birth mother, another parent in the house, and a child with split loyalties all helped throw our home into turmoil. This book came with some wonderful suggestions on helping him, me, and his father through what will continue to be a rocky road. The authors don¿t pretend that you will magically have a happy, calm, peaceful home. You won¿t get that with any kind of family. They give suggestions for working with your husband and the child¿s mother (hopefully as a team, but possibly not) to be something new to this child. I¿d once heard ¿stepson¿ referred to as a ¿bonus son¿ and have tried to behave to him as such. Now I can see myself as a ¿bonus mom¿ to him and can recognize that he may not always be able to see me as that.I essentially skipped all of the religious messages in this book, however. I had no idea when I got this book that it would be so overflowing with Protestant messages (and would not have bought the book if I¿d known about it). But the suggestions given are good enough to skip the prayers and get to the heart of the matter.
Being a step parent is quite possibly one of the most difficult things I have ever done. After nearly eleven years of step-mothering I still don't have all of the answers. Much like parenting a biological child there is simply no manual to instruct you in how to make your role as a step-parent and co-parent come simply. Fortunately there are many authors with both practical experience and degrees in counseling and such who have tried to give struggling step parents at least a little help. The difficulty there is finding an approach that will work for not only your unique situation but also your moral and/or spiritual value system.The Smart Stepmom claims to be a practical approach to guiding struggling stepmoms and it certainly does try for a couple of chapters not to start laying the religion on thick. But as a stepmom looking more for basic insight and examples of helpful ways to approach the role of a stepmother I found that after a point I simply could not gather much from this book. I very deeply respect and appreciate when a religious (in this case Christian) approach is taken in spiritual matters but for me my dealings within the realm of stepmom are not spiritual in nature. If you are a non-Christian or prefer a more scientific approach I would not recommend this book. After a point I found the suggestions of praying and subtle mentions of "being a godly woman" to be impractical at best and almost... well... insulting, at worst. Who are these authors to imply that myself or my spouse are ungodly? There are surely some insightful messages here if you are looking for more spiritual aid but I will not be recommending this book to anyone with real issues that need working through. Please do not be offended when I say that the "pray and wait on God's aid" methodology presented within is just plain silly. As they say... God helps those who help themselves... and I think prayer and godly example are only part of the solution in any given situation, step-parenting or no.
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