Blending a Family
Hey there Lovebugs :)
I wanted to talk about blended families because Hubs and I have one. I came to the marriage with two sons; Hubs, one daughter. Now, we knew that God ordained us to be married so not only were we marrying each other but we were now the parent of each other's children. I WISH that I could say that it has been an easy ride but God knows what He's doing. He's a brief recap of our story:
Hubs and I met May 2, 2012. Within a short time of meeting, it was confirmed that we were each other's spouses through our spiritual leader, Prophetess Racquel. After an accelerated courtship, we were married September 8, 2012. Yes, we got married within SIX MONTHS of knowing each other. We were crazy in love and so happy and excited at how quickly God put us together. I wish I could say the same for some of those closest to us...
My sons, ages 6 and 7 at the time we were married, had some challenges with transitioning from the THREE of us to the FIVE of us. Between my oldest son still secretly hoping that his dad and I would get back together and the relationships between Hubs and the boys and myself and my new daughter just developing, things were just a tad bit tense! You cannot begin to imagine the task of being a newlywed, with now three kids, new living arrangements, new school, adjusting and managing, sometimes struggling to make it all work. Not to mention Hubs and I still getting to know each other (let's face it, how much do you really know about someone in 4 months) and learning how to do marriage God's way. There were some days I thought, this is just TOO much Lord! PLEASE HELP! Other days weren't too bad. Throughout this experience, I have learned quite a few things:
1. What God has joined together, let no man put asunder.
No matter what happens, don't allow anything to come against your marriage, not even the kids. God chose Hubs and I to be together, knowing that we had children already. I had a time adjusting to putting Hubs first not because I didn't love him, but because for years it was just me and my boys, doing basically everything together. But when I said yes to Hubs, I said yes to God and His Will and His Ways and He made it perfectly clear that our marriage is FIRST and then, our children follow!
2. Present a united front NO MATTER WHAT!
Kids are smarter than we know! some adapt and adjust quicker and easier; each case is different. But when you're dealing with children who are having a tough time accepting Mommy or Daddy's new marriage, it is very important to present a unified front. Your spouse needs to know that you guys are teammates, that you have each other's back. If the children see that they can come in between you and your spouse, the enemy will use that foothold to create and wreak havoc in your marriage!
3. Blending a family takes a WHOLE lot of patience.
I thought I knew what patience was... and then I got married! Lol! (I'm laughing but I'm serious!) It takes a whole heap of patience to blend a family. Between different personalities, perspectives and ways of doing things, it's gonna take some time to find that rhythm to get that harmony and peace flowing in your family.
4. You have to be sensitive & allow the kids time to adjust.
Hubs and I try our best to be sensitive to the kids' needs. We weren't always successful in our approach but as time went on, we learned (and are still learning) how to give our children the right environment and space to express themselves but also to know that WE have the final say.
5. NEVER TRY TO TAKE THE PLACE OF THE CHILDREN'S OTHER BIOLOGICAL PARENT
Ah yes, another sensitive area! Whether we like it or not, we still have to be respectful of the role the other biological parent plays in the life of our children. Yes, it would be much, much easier if every blended family had the cooperation and support of all parties involved, but sadly that's not always the case. We still have a responsibility to be Christlike to EVERYONE we come in contact with no matter what.
6. Pray, pray, pray...and pray some more.
Hubs and I stay on our knees covering our family. We know and have experienced the power of prayer and we are so grateful and thankful that not only God hears us, but answers us! We pray for wisdom, guidance, direction, I mean everything as it regards to making sure we are doing this thing HIS WAY! You can never have too much prayer!
7. Resolve to keep working at unifying the family.
Blending a family is something that does NOT happen overnight. You have to work at it day by day. Just like marriage, you have to be willing and committed to making sure that you are sowing peace, dedication and love into your new family or else it simply will NOT work!
8. Don't force it, build it!
One of the worst things you can do is to force unity. It builds resentment, frustration and leaves a stale presence in your home. As stated in #7, this will not happen overnight. Just like with any relationship, you have to invest the time to build it. Only the strongest relationships are built on the firmest foundations.
9. Love each child the same.
Each child, whether biological or not, deserves the love of both husband and wife. There are NO favorites! Treating your biological children different from your new children is a recipe for disaster. When interacting with your new children, think about how you would behave with your biological children or even how you would want your spouse to treat them!
10. Know that God will see you through!
God is SO faithful. Know that if He brings you to something, He'll bring you through it! There is nothing that's too hard for Him.
Blending a family is not impossible although it is challenging. When both spouses are committed to God, each other and their family, a blended family can be full of love, peace and harmony. I thank God for my new family. He's brought us so far and we still have a way to go!
All of us before our youngest daughter was born :)
Pray for us!
Pray for us!