Relating To Stepkids In A Relationship Takes A Healthy Respect For Boundaries

Illustration by Christiane Grauer

Illustration by Christiane Grauer

Dr. Lana as just been interviewed for Hadassah Magazine!  In the article 'Under The Huppa Again' about navigating the delicate waters of a second marriage, Lana was asked for any advice for new stepparents.

Relating to stepkids takes a healthy respect for boundaries, says Lana Staheli, a Seattle-based relationship coach and coauthor of Snap Strategies for Couples: 40 Fast Fixes for Everyday Relationship Pitfalls (Seal Press). Staheli helped raise her two stepchildren.

"I have seen so many new stepmothers have their hearts broken,” she says. “That is inevitable unless you accept that your stepkids already have a mom and do not need another; it is the No. 1 reason that issues around children break up so many second marriages.”

Her advice: Instead of applying for a job that is already taken, show the kids what a really loving, respectful marriage looks like. “And work directly with their mother,” she says, “Offer to help her out. Remember, she is not your enemy.” In fact, says Staheli, four decades into her marriage, “my stepkids thank me for being so good to their mom.”

For the rest of the article, check it out here!