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If you are a step-parent you probably already know what a difficult job it is. Many, many factors figure into how successful you will be.  Some of these factors include:

1.) Do you have any children of your own?

2.) Are they in the home or are they older adults?

3.) Does your new spouse have children in the home or out of the home?

4.) Are you custodial or do you get visitation?
4.) Are all the adults communicating with each other civilly  for the sake of the children, or are they all fighting?

5.) Does your spouse's ex cause problems by brain-washing the children against you?

6.) Do you and your spouse agree on how to discipline the children?

7.) Do you and your spouse back each other up in front of the children or does your spouse defend his or her child?

8.) Does your spouse put you first above his or her children, or are you "last man on the totem pole?"
9.) Do you have good step-children or do you have manipulative, lying step-children who are doing everything they can to break you and your spouse up?
These are just a few of the problems that having step-children can bring into a second marriage.  And unfortunately, unless you and your new spouse have a rock solid, firm foundation in place between you, any of the above problems can end your marriage.

It all depends on your maturity level, your ethics, your relationship with God, and your patience.  If you can be patient, and not over-react, many times these problems just naturally run their course.
If you need help with being a step-parent and trying to keep the peace in your new marriage, please do not hesitate to send me an e-mail or contact me for Telephone Counseling, so that I may be able to point you in the right direction.  Having been a step-parent myself I completely understand the dynamics that can arise.  Hope to hear from you soon.
Children grow up, and turn into teenagers where friends become more important than parents and the interest goes to friends, rather than in trying to manipulate things and cause problems between you and your new spouse.

There are exceptions of course if you have a step-child who is a problem wherever they go, and they are doing drugs, or hurting others, or are in trouble with the law.  Then it becomes a matter of supporting your spouse who has to deal with this difficult and sometimes dangerous child.
And if your spouse is in denial about how severe a problem his or her child has, and actually defends the child, and covers up for the child, then you have a HUGE problem to deal with.
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