Raising Children Network has launched new videos and articles to help parents in step and blended families navigate the unique circumstances they encounter when raising children.

In Australia:

  • In 2014, divorces involving children represented 47.0% of all divorces granted.¹
  • The number of children involved in divorces totalled 40,152 in 2014.²
  • Love, security and warmth influence how children go in life. These are much more important than the
    kind of family they grow up in.

The nine new scientifically-based articles and five videos on raisingchildren.net.au tackle a range of topics, including:

  • how to help children and teens adjust to separation and divorce,
  • what to expect of children’s feelings and behaviour when moving into a blended family home
  • tips on how to discipline a step-child and
  • welcoming a new baby in a blended family.

Most stepfamilies prefer to call themselves just a family, rather than use a defined label, however a blended family is also a common term. Blended family can also refer to families where the new couple who have other children have a child together.

Associate Professor Julie Green, Executive Director, Raising Children Network says the new videos and articles are an important addition to the free tips and tools available 24/7 on raisingchildren.net.au.

“Translating research on what works best and sharing the experiences of many step and blended families means there’s now lots of reliable and practical tips and reassurance on Raising Children Network reflecting the real needs of Australian families,” she says.

“Children react in many different ways to family changes. It’s normal and OK for children to feel unsure in the early days of major changes to their home life. There are many new situations children need to work through including sharing a parent with a new partner, navigating stepsiblings or when a new baby comes along.”

“The videos of real-life parents sharing how they work out issues like children sharing spaces in a blended family household or how they discipline a partner’s child are a great source of support for other parents also navigating these circumstances,” says Associate Professor Green.

The Raising Children Network website is visited by over 30,000 Australians a day and contains over 2,200 resources on parenting from pregnancy to teens.

Karen Field, CEO Stepfamilies Australia, collobarated with Raising Children Network to provide expert advice on the stepfamily videos and welcomes the new resources.

“We know that the early days of creating a stepfamily can often be challenging for both parents and children. Practical resources that help these families establish positive ways of communicating and navigating everyday life make these transtions much easier. It is great to have these free and trusted resources available on raisingchildren.net.au for parents to turn to.”

“It is also great to acknowledge within these resources the wonderful opportunities that stepfamilies can bring, including the fantastic richness and diversity that step grandparents and relatives provide,” says Ms Field.

The step and blended families section on Raising Children Network website can be found at raisingchildren.net.au/single_parents_blended_families/parenting_after_separation.html.

For further information or to arrange an interview with Associate Professor Julie Green, Executive Director of Raising Children Network, please contact:

Natalie Perrin, Media and Communications Advisor: 0407 839 298, nperrin@parentingrc.org.au.

¹ http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/3310.0

² ibid