Positively Paula

Here Comes Support for the Remarrying Bride

Tuesday, November 08, 2011
Are you getting remarried? Or, planning a second wedding? Or, have a friend who is? Last night I had the sincere pleasure of interviewing two incredible women on the RemarriageWorks.com show on the Stepmom's Toolbox mini network on BlogTalkRadio.com. In this free, downloadable podcast of "Here Comes Support for the Remarrying Bride," you'll hear top tips that you should know before your second wedding day.  

My two guests were Christy Borgeld, founder of National Stepfamily Day and Martha Wiles, a wedding planner and encore bridal specialist. Christy Borgeld, as mother of the groom, has just experienced planning a wedding in her own blended family and offers some valuable suggestions on working through stepfamily challenges during the encore wedding planning stage. And, Martha Wiles shares some really unique ideas about planning second weddings, including suggestions if you and/or your future spouse have children.

You can also catch some of their fabulous insights about remarrying, second weddings, and stepfamily blending in my book, Journal for Stepmoms as they have each contributed some helpful information to it. Tune in when your schedule allows; it's a great way to kick off your second wedding planning. Enjoy and best wishes to you on your remarriage journey!

It Isn't Too Late to Hear "Mediation Can Help in Divorce & Remarriage"

Tuesday, October 04, 2011
If you missed my interview, "Mediation Can Help in Divorce & Remarriage" last night on RemarriageWorks.com's show on the Stepmom's Toolbox network, it isn't too late to hear it! You can listen to it or download it on BlogTalkRadio.com. A sincere thank you goes to guests Jim Pope and Ann Warshauer of the non-profit Northern VA Mediation Service for a very enlightening interview.  Enjoy!  Coming up on our next show on Nov. 7 is an interview with Christy Borgeld, the founder of National Stepfamily Day plus a special surprise for remarrying brides. 

Remember National Stepfamily Day is September 16th!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011
This past weekend was pretty tough for many people as our country remembered the events of 9/11 and honored so many heroes and heroines. May we never forget. It was an even tougher day for me personally because my father died suddenly at the age of 54 on the same date 16 years ago. I am certain there were many moist eyes, including mine. When I woke up Monday morning and saw the sun shining for the first time in several days, I tried to think about some good things coming up this week. National Stepfamily Day, celebrated on September 16th is one of those things.

National Stepfamily Day and the National Stepfamily Day Foundation were founded by Christy Borgeld, who has worked tirelessly for 15 years to raise awareness about stepfamily issues, and develop programs, research, and support to American stepfamilies. If you ever get the opportunity to connect with Christy, just do it!

This astounding woman, who received an Outstanding Service Award from the Women's Information Network this year has a contagious passion to help step and blended families. Don't miss her video featuring 101 things to do with your family on National Stepfamily Day.

Lately, there has been some debate about whether stepfamilies need or should have a special day, such as National Stepfamily Day dedicated to them. I agree that a stepfamily is a family. And, while as much I may want or have wanted my stepfamily to not be different from a family that was formed by a first marriage with everyone biologically connected, in some ways it just simply is. It is a family no less, as we know that families come in many varieties these days.

My feelings about whether my stepfamily is different from any other family have shifted over the years. At first, I was hell-bent that my new stepfamily wasn't going to be treated as different. We were all going to learn to love each other and get along no matter what. Now I realize that hell, sometimes there are parts of my biological family, 40+ years old in which I grew up that still don't always get along, and I frankly wonder at times where some of the love is.

Here's the bottom line as I see it today. The majority of stepfamilies that I have come across face unique challenges and circumstances. They are families. And, one of the reasons I support National Stepfamily Day is that I know first-hand how difficult it can be to have a successful remarriage and stepfamily. Building a successful, lasting stepfamily requires hard work, dedication, self-growth, time, dedication, patience, love, and more. I'm celebrating what we have built thus far. I hope you do, too.

A Shared Vision: The Stepfamily Summit

Monday, August 02, 2010

Today I had the sincere pleasure of speaking again with Christy Borgeld, the
founder of National Stepfamily Day. I have gotten to know Christy, a wonderfully caring and dedicated woman who has worked tirelessly at a grass roots level to support stepfamilies throughout the nation for the last 14 years, through the wonderful virtual world of Facebook, Twitter, and e-mail.  While we have never met personally, we hit it off immediately, and speaking with her always sparks ideas. You see, we share a common passion; namely, to support stepfamilies; and, we both want to provide great resources and information to blended families and stepfamilies. And, we know we aren't the only ones with this passion for this topic.

We are very familiar with the dismal statistic that out of the nearly 1300 stepfamilies that are forming daily, approximately 65% end in divorce. And, we aren't the only ones who want to help make stepfamilies successful. We agree that there are many people, starting with stepmoms, stepdads, stepfamily coaches, counselors,  family law attorneys, psychologists, social workers, academic researchers, educators, government officials, and whole non-profit organizations who are working long days (and many into the night) to help stepfamilies thrive.

Christy and I shared a vision today; i.e., a national Stepfamily Summit, so to speak, comprised of great and passionate thinkers, problem solvers, master minds, advocates, etc. in the stepfamily realm. Our goal: to raise awareness about stepfamily-related issues, brainstorm problems, and identify solutions.

For years there has been a lot of talk about stovepiped organizations in the Intelligence Community, and that this situation possibly leads to intelligence failures which ultimately harm our national security. Collaboration is key. As is money. Few would disagree. You may be asking yourself: how on earth can the success of stepfamilies be as important as national security?

I daresay that there are probably more than a few people, whose marriage and stepfamily are literally falling apart right now, that emotionally feel their situation is just as important as world peace. Losing a marriage can be one of the most horrible experiences in a person's life and the effects on our nation's children is another great concern. For those of you who aren't in a stepfamily, did you know that in 2003, divorce cost the nation approximately $33.3 billion? (See "On ReMarriage: Marriage Training a Good Investment," The Washington Times, June 14, 2009) I, myself, was shocked when I learned about the effects on taxpayers.

As Christy and I ended our call, we once again commented that's it great to have ideas, but even better to execute them. So, today I'm taking the first step and throwing out a vision to the world. Contact me if you'd like to become part of a Stepfamily Summit. It may take years, but I'd like to see everyone with a passion for enabling successful stepfamilies collaborate like never before.



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