The Blended Family: An Aunt’s Approach

My family has transitioned. My older brother recently  remarried and as a result took on fathering three bonus children.

When we think of blended families we almost always consider the husband, wife, and children in the immediate situation. 

But coming from an aunt’s perspective, blending affects us all. 

The Blended Family An Aunts Approach
All 5 of my nieces and nephews playing in the pool

How Blending Affects “Us” All

  • The number shift

Overnight you go from being the aunt of a set amount of children to multiples. This is an adjustment because now you have to learn new ages and birthdays and adjust your budget so that no one is left out. More than that you have to open up to loving new littlles ( or not so littles).

  • Uncertainties

There are a host of uncertainties that come with new roles and a shift in family dynamics. With uncertainties come questions that need to be considered and addressed delicately.

  1. What do the children call me? 
  2. How are they feeling in their new norm?
  3. What changes do I need to make , if any?
  4. If you get one, do you have to get them all? 
  5. How does the dynamic change with my previous in laws?

This is a very short list. There are TONS of other questions.

Positive relationships with the new extended families helps children adjust and gives them a sense of belonging. “

Tips on Being a Step Auntie : My Approach Anyway

Respect the newness of it all

Yes, this is a blog about how blending effects (me), I mean the extended family, but it is important that I say that the new family will need time to figure out their new normal. Respect that and give them the space to do that..

Be Consistent

Love everyone. What you do for one,  be willing to do for the others. This goes for everything including discipline. 

Develop individual relationships

If you have the resources and distance isn’t an issue, take the time to get to know everyone individually. This can be done in a variety of ways. Learn their interests and get creative. This will help and make all the children feel welcome in their new family.


Yes, my brother remarried, but his choice does not dictate the actions of his family. Be open and have clear conversations about how you feel, what new traditions  you want to participate in and respect what the new family communicates they want to do privately. 

More than any of this, just  be open to love one another.

The family dynamic  is a crucial influence in human development.

There will be hiccups a long the way.

drink some water.

6 thoughts on “The Blended Family: An Aunt’s Approach”

  1. Love it. We go about our daily lives doing what we believe is best of us and don’t allow look into the domino effect and how one actions affects so many others. Its refreshing to hear this topic from an Aunt perspective.

  2. Yes, in past time when I thought of a blended family I looked at it being husband, wife and mixture of new siblibgs. Speaking from the grandmother perspective it’s scary and stressful. I mean not so good scary but a good stress in away.
    When my son got married and gave me my bonus gobblers I would say it was a little overwhelming trying to figure out will they accept me, do they want another grandma “Binka”.
    All the uncertainties and not being clear how to have different conversations without offending makes blending kinda hard.
    I’m still in the figuring out stage on everyone’s likes/ dislikes and other important stuff. However, I believe with prayer and love I’ll get it. I think loving all five of them and giving them my best will help me figure it out.

    1. Prayer and love is a great combination. You can conquer anything with them both.

  3. I recall doing a short skit on blended families. During that time, I learned so much about the aspect of people coming together. Weather it was race, sex or nationally everyone brings something unique to the table. God has created us in all these different shapes, forms size so that we can enjoy life no matter how we look. Blended families showed me to be more open and acceptable or who people are!

    1. Thank you for sharing. When writing this post it was more from my own personal experiences, but your point allowed me to consider other ways families can be blended ( adoption, marriage, foster families, etc.) You made a valid point in that God created us in various ways to fulfill his various purposes.

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