Today we celebrate 15 years, my man and I. Fifteen years of love and arguments, children and teens, graduations and job, births and funerals.


As a stained glass window tells a story through broken shards of glass, our story is told through broken hearts becoming a stepfamily. (tweet)


We find the word Step in Latin-Old English glossary as bereaved or orphaned, and it has come to mean a family put together with people not related by blood.


Statistics in the United States in 1987 had one-third of families as Stepfamily. If that trend continued, as I think it has, more than half of America’s population in this century will be a family not of origin, or stepfamily.


We have learned to share. There is something about family that causes you to share all things whether you like it or not. We share food, and time away, and time together. We share desserts, and toothpaste and viruses. We share the family car, birthdays and holidays.

I tell the story about our beginning over here.



Just after, “I do”


My first-born walked me down the aisle.


My daughter was my maid-of-honor, his children were flower girl and ring bearer.


My friend Cynthia who introduced us (she is so proud of herself!)


Bubbles as we prepare to leave.


I think the priest should have begun our ceremony with the words,


Dearly Beloved, we are gathered together to witness the union of this family in holy-sharing. And everyone would say, I do.



We have learned, in this stepfamily, that you maneuver differently than we once did in our family of origin. Consistency is more challenging and must be monitored more closely. Discipline is frequently not made by the two adults in the home, because the children will go to the former spouses home. So, consequences for behavior is a triangle of parents who must carefully navigate their own emotions, as well as discipline that will work in both homes.


Despite the challenges, I hold all of these children close to my heart. Those I have birthed as well as those who came with “I do.”


I do promise to care for you children as if they are my own.



I do promise to help with homework.


I do promise to work with the former spouse for what is best for the children.


I do promise to raise them in the nurture and admonition of Christ.


I do promise to love them and show them love.


Like I said, we have made it for 15 years. I have laughed and told Doc,

“15 years – that’s like 50 in Stepfamily years!”


I say that, not just because it has been hard (it has been hard!) but also because it has been good (so very good) and it has been an adventure (like hold on for dear life). And, for the good days and for the difficult days when I have been heard to say,


“I quit! Make your own supper, wash your own clothes – I’m moving to the beach!”


I love this family and I’m so very thankful for what each one has taught me and for the joy of traveling with them through life.





 Would you like to read more about Stepfamily?




Linking today with Lyli , Jennifer Dukes Lee, DarlingDownsDiary

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Diane W. Bailey is the founder of The Consilium – an online community of wisdom and purpose for women over 45 years of age. She is a published author. Her books include String of Pearls – From Tears to Treasure, and 30 Days To A Better Stepfamily. She creates her own line of precious metals bracelets. Diane lives in the Deep South with her husband Doc. Together they have created a stepfamily, each having two stepchildren and two birth children, and share three grandchildren, one black lab named Charlie and one long haired tabby cat named Lil Girl. Diane’s passion is to encourage women to be all God has created them to be by pressing past fear and daring to live life as an adventure. Some of her life adventures include traveling to Israel, speaking, entrepreneurship and backyard farming with Doc. She loves Gumbo, fried shrimp and seeing all sunsets across water.

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