10 Rules For A Happy Second Marriage
Make it work this time around!
Here are 10 Rules for a Happy Second Marriage:
- Practice being vulnerable in small steps so you can build confidence in being more open with your partner. Discussing minor issues (schedules, meals) is a great place to start before tackling bigger matters such as disciplining kids or finances.
- Honesty and communication are key issues in a second marriage. Be sure to be forthcoming about finances, your past, and concerns with your former spouse and children that are relevant.
- Practice Forgiveness. Forgiveness isn’t the same as condoning the hurt done to you but it willallow you to move on. Try to remember you are on the same team.
- Take time as a couple to do things you enjoy without your children. A “date night” or couples time can be very enriching – even if it’s a walk or grabbing a sandwich at a restaurant together.
- Express thoughts, feelings, and wishes in a respectful way. Resentment can build when couples sweep things under the rug, so be vulnerable and don’t bury negative feelings.
- Discuss hot button issues such as money and personality conflicts privately – but hold regular, informal family meetings (where everyone feels heard) to clear the air and address family issues.
- Don’t let differences in child rearing come between you. The role of the stepparent is one of a friend and supporter rather than a disciplinarian. Learn new strategies and share your ideas.
- Accept that there will inevitable ups and downs. Try to be more understanding with each other – and your children and stepchildren.
- Don’t make ultimatums such as “I’m leaving if things don’t improve.” Take the “D” word out of your vocabulary. According to renowned researcher E. Mavis Hetherington, seeing divorce as an option and talking about it can increase your risks for breakup.
- Make a commitment to practice endurance and patience. In time, many of the kinks inherent in stepfamily life will smooth out.
The best way to beat the odds and to see your marriage succeed is to risk being vulnerable with your partner. Determination, respect, acceptance, patience, and having a good sense of humor can go a long way to improving your chances of success in a second marriage.
[via Divorced Moms]