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Guest Post: Gen-X and the Blended Family

by Shirley Cress Dudley, MA LPC
Twitter @BlendedFamily4U

photo via stitcher

Generation X is the generation that has seen the most divorces and remarriages in their lifetime. Twenty years ago, it was rare for a family to be divorced. These families were in the minority and if your family was divorced, you didn’t talk much about it.

Here are some statistics from the American Blended Family Association:

  • There are 2,100 new blended families every day in America.
  • More than 20+ million Blended Family households exist today and that number grows daily.
  • Research shows that by the year 2010 the ‘blended family’ will be the most common form of family unit in our nation.
  • By 2010, 130+ million people either will be in or have been in a blended family of some form (through re-marriage, adoption, foster home, etc.)
  • 60 percent of second marriages end in divorce.

How does Generation X respond to these figures?

It’s still embarrassing and upsetting to have your family divorce and your parents remarry other partners. Many hope that their parents will get back together and are devastated when their parents find new mates and start a new marriage.

Young adults are also upset when their marriage doesn’t work out and ends in divorce, after all attempts to save the marriage fail. Many are remarrying in hopes of a better marriage the second time. These second marriages result in blended families, when one or both adults bring children from a previous relationship into the new marriage.

It’s important to figure out why a marriage failed so that each person can work on improving his or her relationship skills and not bringing negative baggage into a new marriage.

There are resources available on blended families. Some people even seek counseling or coaching for their blended family concerns. It’s difficult to blend a new family out of two other families. It’s OK to struggle a little at first, and feel uncomfortable. With patience and understanding, your blended family will become an added bonus to your biological family, and a source of support and strength for you.

Shirley Cress Dudley is a licensed professional counselor with a master’s degree in Marriage and Family Counseling, and a master’s degree in Education. She is the founder of The Blended & Step Family Resource Center- which offers coaching, ebooks, newsletters and more. Her website is: Shirley is married and is in a stepfamily with five kids, ages 14-21. She has a passion for helping blended families grow strong and be successful.

Gen X Blog Jennifer Chronicles

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