An Analysis of the Stepfamily Essay

An Analysis of the Stepfamily Essay

Length: 2001 words (5.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Term Papers

Open Document

Essay Preview



Divorce and remarriage have a profound effect on the parents and can have harmful effects on the future relationships of their children. Marriage is a complicated and an arduous process with many trials. However, remarriage and the concept of a stepfamily is akin to walking barefoot on hot coals. The dynamics of a stepfamily is dictated early by the fantasies and the subsequently the realities of the marriage and stepfamily issues.

In The Fantasy of the Perfect Mother, Nancy Chodorow and Susan Contratto call this “primary process” thinking. It means acting on fantasies and emotions rather than analyzation and interpretation. A marriage involves primary process as people fall in love and subsequently the realities of the hardship of marriage hits them. However, this process dominates a remarriage even more. Individuals entering into the remarriage are confident that they can make a marriage work. However, the result is that these remarriages fail at a greater percentage rate than those that occur the first time around. This situation is complicated even more if there is presence of children from previous marriage of the spouse. This “thinking process” is learned by the children inhabiting a stepfamily and then dominates their thought and actions into adulthood. A remedy of this situation is for the stepfamily to undergo this thinking process and to emerge with stronger and healthier relationships as a result of this ordeal.

The fantasies and misconceptions enveloping a family are illustrated in Nancy Chodorow and Susan Contratto’s “Fantasy of the Perfect Mother.” In the article, the authors present feminist theories and concepts that attack the idea of motherhood. Some of them present the belief that a mother can never b...


... middle of paper ...


...n, the stepparent can employ secondary process thinking to advance the construction of the stepfamily. However, if the stepparent continues to remain disjointed by his or her initial emotional or idealistic response to the harsh realities of remarriage, the stepfamily is doomed for a spectacular failure.

Works Cited

Beers, William. "Relative Strangers"

Berkin, Carol. "Making America: A History of the Unites States Volume a to 1877"

Fisher, John and Emily. "Stepfamilies: Myths and Realities", Secaucus, New Jersey: Citadel Press, 1984.

Nancy Chodorow and Susan Contratto. "The Fantasy of the Perfect Mother"

Pasley, Kay and Marilyn Ihinger-Tallman. “Remarriage and stepparenting: current research and theory”

Rosin, Mark Bruce "Stepfathering"

Wallerstein, Judith, Julia M. Lewis, and Sandra Blakeslee. "The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce", Hyperion.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Analysis : ' One Night ' Essay

- One night, there was a beautiful elegant woman, Lisa, who was sitting by herself at Club Soda. She just ordered herself an extra dirty vodka martini after a long day of dealing with unnecessary ex husband drama. Not only was this scum of a man her ex husband, but also the father of her two gorgeous teenage daughters, Addy and Sue, so Lisa did not really have a choice when it came to putting up with his life problems. Lisa was not so perfect herself. She knew she was beautiful, and that became a problem with most men she tried to date....   [tags: Family, Stepfamily]

Term Papers
1372 words (3.9 pages)

Analysis Of The Book ' The Terrorist 's Son ' Essay

- The end of the story has come. The book, The Terrorist’s Son had a predictable ending. As I stated in my first journal, 1-4 this is going to be another life story. It is a life story that ended well. Zac Ebrahim, the main character in the book, and the author of the book chose a path of his own. He chose to live a life defined by him, not a life he was given. I am glad he did that, but still this does not change that way I felt about the story. I did not enjoy or was even interested in the book....   [tags: Marriage, Family, Friendship, Stepfamily]

Term Papers
724 words (2.1 pages)

Analysis Of Shakespeare 's ' Hamlet ' Essays

- Relationships are built off a balance of trust and communication. As soon as one end fails, the other one will hit the ground as well, causing the relationship to crumble into a pit of distrust and despair. In a family perspective, through the traumatic divorce and remarriage, sometimes the children will not agree with the new step-father, allowing for the scale to tip and the relationship ruined. This balancing of the scales breaks in Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” between Claudius—the murderous stepfather who only cares for his well-being—and Hamlet—the vengeful son feeling as if the whole world is against him—during the progression of the play....   [tags: Hamlet, Characters in Hamlet, Stepfamily, Ghost]

Term Papers
762 words (2.2 pages)

Analysis Of The Story ' The Story Of Rags ' Riches ' Essay

- It’s a classic, the story of rags to riches. A story all find familiarity, inspiration, and hope in. A story with a common theme, anyone can follow. This same idea exists with the story of Cinderella. Another classic, this tale is told around the world in more than five hundred versions according to Mary Northrup, a reference librarian working with the American Library Association. Due to the multitude of versions, it is easy to say most everyone is familiar with the story of Cinderella. However, each version offers a different outlook or purpose, as Anne Sexton’s poem does....   [tags: Cinderella, Fairy tale, Family, Stepfamily]

Term Papers
1914 words (5.5 pages)

Analysis Of Anne Sexton 's ' Cinderella ' Essay

- Fairy tales have been known to identify different aspects of life such as modern issues and concerns without having to directly point them out. In Anne Sexton’s poem, her version of “Cinderella”, modern issues and concerns are discussed through the lens of the fairytale. She touches on aspects of marriage such as wealth and possessiveness of money by discussing how most of the women in fairytales want to marry into wealthy families. Sexton also discusses how fitting into society’s complex standards is another modern issue by showing that in order for Cinderella to go out in public, she feels as if she needs to dress according to the way society dresses....   [tags: Family, Stepfamily, Ugly sisters, Marriage]

Term Papers
1114 words (3.2 pages)

Analysis Of Riseman And Seale 's Chapter Betwixt And Be Tween Essay

- 1. In Riseman and Seale’s chapter Betwixt and Be Tween, they focus on how sexual identity can be used to police a male’s masculinity. It can start with something as innocent as a shy, quiet boy who starts to be picked on because he is no assertive or aggressive like the other males. The way he is picked on can be the other boy’s called him a: faggot, gay, homo, or boy lover. This means at a young age boys start to think they have to be a certain way to seem manly: assertive, enjoy sports, and be better than girls in all aspects; these are just a few ways boys try to prove their masculinity....   [tags: Family, Stepfamily, Arranged marriage, Male]

Term Papers
1500 words (4.3 pages)

Understanding The Stages Of Stepfamily Development Essay

- Storyline: A couple discovers they 're in love and they decide to get married. Their rose-colored glasses are quickly lost when they are sucked into stormy stepfamily seas within a week of setting sail. TV shows like The Brady Bunch or Dog with a Blog show examples of happily blended families, but parents and step parents in real life might feel like their ships are sinking. Becoming a blended family requires flexibility, forgiveness, and lots of patience. Understanding the stages of stepfamily development, framed by Dr....   [tags: Family, Stepfamily, Ugly sisters, Parent]

Term Papers
1953 words (5.6 pages)

Characteristics Of A Family Or Stepfamily Essay

- The Stepfamily Stepfamilies can be complex and are becoming a common occurrence within the military. In the military the high occurrence of stepfamilies is believed to be more common because, it is common for couples to marry and start families young (Hall, 2008). These young families then divorce and remarry, creating many blended families (Hall, 2008). It is important when working with military families to understand both, the dynamics and characteristics of step families. Dynamics The dynamics of a family or stepfamily involves how members interact with each other (Hall, 2008)....   [tags: Family, Stepfamily, Marriage, Ugly sisters]

Term Papers
2045 words (5.8 pages)

Life Course Of Stepfamily ' Stepfamilies Cycle Essay

- Life course of Stepfamily Stepfamilies cycle According to Papernow, the stepfamily 's goals is to move from a biological subsystem family with the stepparent as an outsider to a family unified by a strong, cooperative couple (Papernow,1985). While every family move tries through the different life cycle the first family 's ideas cycle is somewhat uncomplicated. The stelfamilies life cycle is a little more complex because they are bringing their live together and all of the baggage from the first family into the new family....   [tags: Family, United States, Marriage, Stepfamily]

Term Papers
1666 words (4.8 pages)

The Smart Stepfamily : 7 Steps A Healthy Family Essay

- Review of The Smart Stepfamily: 7 Steps to a Healthy Family Summary Within his book The Smart Stepfamily: 7 Steps to a Healthy Family, Ron Deal (2014) presents a realistic approach to strengthening stepfamilies through focusing on each individual family member’s needs. Real-world scenarios along with integrating family therapy and biblical truth are used in exploring the many issues that stepfamilies resolve. The crux of Deal’s advice is the need to modify expectations from forming a rapidly blended family to integrating a slow-cooked approach that allows for the time and the coarse hardships that are experienced in developing a healthy stepfamily relationships....   [tags: Family, Stepfamily, Marriage, Ugly sisters]

Term Papers
1487 words (4.2 pages)