Knowing when to end a relationship in a blended family may be extremely difficult and unpleasant. There are practical symptoms to be aware of before deciding to leave your relationship especially if you have a gut instinct that something isn’t quite right.
Whether you live with your partner and children, are planning to marry, or have been married or engaged for a long time, terminating a relationship with children can add an added layer of difficulty to an already tough decision.
When to Call it Quits in a Blended Family
When you and your Partner are not Working as a Team
If you and your spouse are unable to function as a team and neither of you is prepared to make a serious effort to change, you will most likely have numerous marital and familial issues. For both you and your children, this may lead to a hectic and unhealthy home atmosphere.
Assuming you know what position or responsibilities your spouse wants in terms of home life, sexual life, and as a parent are examples of not working together as a team. When problems develop, people tend to blame each other rather than work together to solve them.
Refusing to talk about reoccurring family or relationship problems especially when it comes to co-parenting, failing to have a strong strategy and blaming each other when problems develop are also red flags that indicates that it is the time to quit the blended family.
When your Partner is Displaying Signs of Jealousy
If you notice your partner become envious when the kids are given precedence, this is a major red flag. Both you and your spouse should emphasize the well-being of your kids without making them feel like an afterthought or as if they are contributing to your relationship’s troubles.
Jealousy can manifest itself in the following ways: When the children are prioritized, your partner shifts the focus to themselves in a huge or dramatic way. Redirecting the argument back to oneself and refusing to address kid-related logistics and complaining that you pay more attention to the kids than you do to them.
When you are Experiencing Significant Co-Parenting Issues
If you and your partner can’t find out how to readjust to being co-parents and one or both of you is reluctant to work on it, you’re going to have a lot of problems as your relationship develops. This will have a severe influence not just on your romantic connection, but also on the children involved.
It’s crucial for co-parents to make a strategy for how you both want co-parenting to go. It is important to give each other typical scenarios with your children and talk about how your co-parent will manage them.
It is vital to check in with each other on a regular basis to make sure you’re both happy with how co-parenting is going. Be receptive to each other’s input without becoming defensive, and be prepared to seek outside assistance if co-parenting challenges become too overwhelming.
When the Relationship Becomes Abuse
It’s time to consider ending your relationship if your spouse is abusive to you, their children or your children. Allowing your children to be exposed to these harmful behaviors puts them in danger and you at risk of losing them if somebody reports the abuse to Child Protective Services.
Gaslighting you and the kids also known as crazy-making is a sign of abuse. Emotional abuse and manipulation as well as physical abuse striking, kicking, pinching, scratching, threatening to harm, belittling, terrorizing, isolating you and the kids from others are also signs of an abusive relationship.
Remember that if you leave a relationship and your spouse is abusing their children, you should report the abuse and try to protect them as well.
When you Lack Support from Your Spouse
When you have children and you don’t feel like your partner is always on your side, things are likely to go worse. Both partners in a good relationship should be available to support one other through the highs and lows of daily living. This may not be the best connection for you and your child if you can’t trust or depend on your spouse.
Also keep in mind that children are always monitoring and incorporating what they see, so if their concept of a loving partner is someone who isn’t reliable or consistent, they are likely to repeat this pattern as adults.
When there is Issues with Communication
The following are some examples of communication breakdown in a blended family, when your partner wants you to parent your own children as well as theirs without their assistance or input. Additionally, when your spouse refuses to talk about your relationship or co-parenting with you and becomes agitated or furious when you bring it up, it’s a red flag.
When making major decisions, your partner does not confer with the other parent of their children. Also, when your partner is uninterested in your children and refuses or avoids discussing it. If you notice these signs then you should contemplate quitting the relationship.
Why Most Blended Families tend to Fail
For a variety of reasons, blended families may not work out and this may be due to:
- Having false expectations about what your relationship and family life will look like once you get married or move in together
- Unwillingness to work on difficult problems or seek outside help when needed Challenges with ex-partners that add additional stress to the new family unit
- Jealousy and sibling-related issues
- Having trouble adjusting to new routines
- Less attention for the children
- Lack of preparedness for how tough the transition may be for your family
- Disliking or having problems bonding with step-parents
It’s difficult to determine when it’s time to leave a blended family. If you’re having trouble making a decision, pay attention to your gut instinct and seek outside help especially from experts, family and friends.
When you become experiencing the above listed signs in your blended family, then you should consider quitting before it becomes toxic and a threat to your well-being.