Where everything is happy and the family only see the good things; the couple is happy to have each other; the children are excited to have a mother or a father living with them again, and they are excited about the new siblings.
2) THE CONFUSION STAGE
Where the romance and excitement has worn off for the parents and the children, and reality starts to sink in; everybody starts to wonder if this is really going to last.
3) THE CONFLICT STAGE
Feelings of anger and aggression may emerge with a lot of tension and stress on the family; issues of money and power may arise. This stage may be overcome by using resolution skills.
4) THE COMING TOGETHER STAGE
This is a less intense stage where everyone is learning to work and live together peacefully and things are becoming balanced.
5) THE RESOLUTION STAGE
During this stage the family starts to bond together and accept the reality of their new family and become more comfortable.
Refer to the Handout in www.RonaldMah.com for the Basic Rules of Developmental Theories. The basic rules of all developmental theories apply to the Stages of Blending in a Step-Family. Each stage needs to be satisfactorily satiated. Sequence and progression apply. Rushing or skipping does not work. Stress, abuse, or trauma will get the family stuck or make it regress.