Welcome to stepfamily.com.au

Step parents, biological parents, and people with any other kind of connection to a step or blended family are welcome here.


This page is our blog, where you will find short illustrations of the types of situations that stepfamilies find themselves in, as well as useful links to resources.

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October, Halloween

Halloween is a particularly American tradition, gaining popularity here in Australia. With so many children now wanting to take part in dressing up and getting lollies, its just another thing that stepfamilies now get to work around.

Does your ex encourage your kids to go door to door? Are you wanting to participate with your kids and getting a hard time from your ex?
Or perhaps you have a different point of view from your significant other?

Step inside *muh huh ha ha* and allow the creepy stepfamily types of the forum listen to your story!

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September, school holidays

September is an interesting time of the year. Its warming up, the birds are singing, flowers are blooming, and the kids can finally get outside to play.

It also brings the September school holidays – a favourite for those looking to spend fun family times together.

This can be a challenge in a step family. Maybe you don’t want to spend your holidays with your children with your partner and their children. Maybe you aren’t ready to be “one big happy family”. Maybe you are – and you want to share the joy that it brings you.

Either way, as the days lengthen and the sun shines more regularly, the forum is here for you, on the other side of the link.

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June – The Winter Begins!

Ahh winter. The perfect time to be snuggled up inside the house, toasty warm and enjoying the hibernation.

Unless… you are stuck in the house with your stepfamily when things aren’t going well.

Smells… warmed up by heating systems and floating through the house.

Boisterous children… his, hers, theirs, bouncing off walls and getting into mischief.

Fraying nerves… everyone on top of one another, no escape to the great outdoors, just grating, grating, grating…

Come on into the the forums. Its warm, and spacious, and the virtual kettle is always on.

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May and Mothers Day

May may just be one of the most difficult months on the stepfamily calendar. Mothers Day is fraught with challenges for Mothers and Stepmothers, Fathers and Stepfathers.

Do you buy your own gift if you are a single mother? Do you send a gift to the stepmother in your children’s life? Do the stepchildren in your house make gifts for their mother, when she is absent from their lives… while ignoring the stepmother who does everything for them?

If you are the biological father, do you purchase a gift and send it to your ex? Is this action welcome or unwelcome… and how do the children feel arriving with something from you… or with nothing? If you are the stepfather, do you feel resentment that your stepchildren do not appreciate their mother enough?

Does the Mothers Day weekend require you to shuffle and twist all your care arrangements in order to make sure the kids are where they need to be?

In our home my daughter is taken by my husband, (her stepfather) to buy me a lovely gift each year. She makes a gift for her stepmother, and while it used to feel like a knife through my heart, each year it gets easier to encourage her to do so. While I do not get on with her stepmother, I recognise that she is an important figure in my daughters life… and it isn’t a competition for her affection.

Whatever you are up to this Mothers Day, whatever challenges or joys it raises for you, you will find understanding in the forum pages.

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Long weekends

With this month comes some wonderful long weekends (depending on which Australian State you are in), and Easter, a time to be with family and friends and enjoy a little time off work, and perhaps religious celebrations if you are Christian.

I used to view long weekends as something to be looked forward to, planned for, and enjoyed. These days, I have to think about whether it is a weekend when we will have stepchildren or not before I start planning.

And Easter? Fraught with danger.

If I feed them too much chocolate will their other parent think I’m negligent? If I don’t feed them enough chocolate, will their other parent think I’m neglecting them? Do I have to be back at a changeover point in the middle of the long weekend, and what will happen if I want to take the children away longer – will the other parent agree? Will the other parent say no? How do I explain to my partner that we can’t do what we want to do because my ex won’t agree?

Keeping everyone happy is an impossible task, and trying will only drive you to insanity… or the internet seeking support!

If it is support you are seeking in this long weekend filled month, then please come and join us in the forum pages – all welcome, no judgement, just people who understand.

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Be My Valentine

Be My Valentine. This month is the time when the whole world seems to focus on love – being in love, being with the one you love, eternal happiness and bliss.

If you are in a stepfamily, chances are that while you love your partner, it isn’t all roses. As much as we might like it to be, there are so many conflicting emotions in a stepfamily situation that true, unblemished, endless love seems a long way from where we are, most of the time.

The love between two people in a stepfamily can often be stronger than a “normal” couple – when respect, kindness and mutual understanding is present, a stepfamily can add a new level to a relationship, it is fired under conditions that make it strong and able to deal with anything else that life can throw at it.

But sometimes, when love is all you have, and respect, kindness, and mutual understanding seem reserved for the times between step-childrens’ visits, or around the shenanigans of an ex-spouse, then love can be the only thing that keeps you hanging on.

Whatever the current state of your love, we offer you a February virtual bouquet of understanding, kindness, support, and friendship. All you have to do is pick it up, by following the links to our forum pages.

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Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2013, a year of promise, hope and endless possibilities.

Did you make a New Years resolution?

Are you resolving to be better, to try harder, to make someone like you?

Or to stop trying so hard, to accept the situation in your family as it is?

Resolving to fight less? Or perhaps you’ve resolved to fight more? For rights, or respect?

I have made so many resolutions over the past few years – to spend more time with my biological child, to build stronger relationships, to have a family that thrives and laughs and stays together no matter what.

If only being in a stepfamily was as easy as making a resolution!

I believe it was at this time of year that I first sought out assistance as modern people do – by Google-ing.

It was hot. Holidays. Endless, endless holidays. My child was with her father. My husband’s children had been visiting for what felt like forever, and I was drowning.

Drowning in the expectations of my husband, drowning in the feelings of anger, inadequacy and guilt that being in my particular stepfamily situation had caused me.

In the forums I found my life preserver. People who understood the stepfamily dynamic from all angles. I got more than I bargained for. Instead of just having a regular New Year, I got new perspectives, new ideas, new courage, new strength, and new friends.

Whatever has bought you to www.stepfamily.com.au – whether it is a resolution, or a problem, sheer desperation, or just a desire to find a place with likeminded people who understand – I hope that you find what you are looking for on our forum pages, and that this year lives up to all its promise, as a great New Year for you and yours (and his and hers).


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Stepfamilies at Christmas

Stepfamilies are unique and complex things, and Christmas time can bring the challenges of being in a stepfamily into sharp focus.

Where do you spend Christmas day?

Do you buy presents for the stepchildren – even if they no longer speak to you or your partner? What do you do with stepchildren who only visit to collect their gifts? How do you cope if they choose not to visit at all?

What do you do when you have kids who tell you that they expect large and expensive presents?

What do you do when you purchase those presents only to have them disappear to the other parent’s home never to be seen again?

How do you arrange contact around Christmas? Should you share the day, or perhaps alternate so the children get a full Christmas with each parent?

In my family, Christmases are made doubly challenging, because I have a child, and my partner has children… both from previous relationships. We both have Court Orders, but they are not the same – he has a changeover to do on Christmas day, I do not.

There are the traditions that I feel resentful having to share with my stepchildren – putting up the Christmas tree for example.

At times like this I am grateful for a place where I can share my thoughts, ask questions, and speak with people who “get” what it is like to be in a stepfamily.

This Christmas season marks the first anniversary of www.stepfamily.com.au and I would invite you to click on the forum link to the side of this post and join our community.

We are a group of people who are involved in stepfamilies in all capacities – as bio-parents, step-parents, step-children, step-grandparents and friends of stepfamilies.

Merry Christmas to you and yours (and his and hers) from all of us here at www.stepfamily.com.au

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