About Carol

Carol Shwanda chronicles her blended family's lives and experiences offering hope, guidance, wisdom, inspiration and humor to anyone who is in or about to enter into a blended family.

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I would like my blog to be a forum for my readers to share their stories and experiences and express their views and opinions about being a part of a blended family. I am working on a book tentatively titled:Blended Family Stories. It will be an in depth look at the real life challenges and joys of successful blended families. If you would like to be part of my research I'd love to hear from you.Take my Blended Family survey

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For advice or information, email carol@shwanda.com


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  • The Number One Mistake New Step Moms Make

    I had a conversation with a woman yesterday who told me that she thought it was my role as a step mom to be the peacemaker in our blended family, and by that she meant between my husband his ex-wife. I know she was well intentioned, but she was grossly misinformed and dead wrong, as was I, who set out many years ago to be the mediator and facilitator in my husband’s relationship with his former wife. After years of family counseling, advice from step mom support groups, numerous books and simply my day-to-day hands-on experience, I have come to the well informed realization that this is simply not a good idea.

    Step moms are not supposed to bridge the gap between their husband’s current life/wife and his former one. It can only lead to trouble and can create more conflict especially if you get caught in the cross fire. Furthermore, it’s just too hard to remain neutral. From now on I let my husband handle all interactions, scheduling and communications with his former wife because, quite frankly, that’s his job.

    One a side note: I sold all of my step mom/ blended family books at a yard sale a few months ago. When I was debating on whether or not I should sell them, my step daughter, Cheryl was in the room and assured me, “Yeah, I think you got that one down.” The ultimate seal of approval.

    Published on December 27, 2012 · Filed under: ADVICE, BLENDED FAMILIES;
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