Love the second time around is lovelier, but it’s also more complicated.
Supporting your relationship to navigate the extra complexities that come with forming a stepfamily is a big job. And, one to start off right. Thinking of taking the plunge and marrying or moving in with the love of your life & his kids?
There are essential questions that every couple should discuss. Things like having children, religion, views on your sex life, retirement goals and the like. When it comes to a partner with kids, there are some additional questions to ask your partner to get a head start to building a stepfamily & life you love:
- Do we understand the differences between stepfamilies & first-time families? If not, where can we find out?
2. What have you learned from your previous relationships that you want to avoid in ours?
3. Do you have child support obligations? If so, how will they impact on us financially including any future children we may have together?
4. Are we on the same page around finances? Will we have separate accounts or shared? Should we get a prenup? Do you expect or want me to contribute financially for your kids?
5. What happens if your beautiful tween daughter is down-right mean to me?
6. Are you open to my input when it comes to parenting of your children? What is on/off-limits?
7. What expectations do you have about the relationship between me and your kids? How will we manage it if they don’t like me or I don’t like them?
8. Do you expect me to interact with your ex? What do you see my role being in the co-parenting?
9. How will you introduce me to your ex? How will you introduce me to other people when the ex is present?
10. How do your parents/extended family feel about your ex? How do you see me fitting into this scenario?
11. How will we handle it as a couple if the ex doesn’t comply with the parenting arrangements?
12. What will you do if your ex speaks badly about me to you, the kids, extended family or friends?
13. How are we with conflict? Where could we do better?
14. Do we each have a team of support around us? If not, what do we need to do to support each other to make that happen?
15. Are there things that either of us is expecting to change once we move in/get married? About each other? About the kids? About the parenting arrangements?