Understanding the (Big!) Challenges of "Blended Families"

Friday, November 9, 2018
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM

The Brattleboro Retreat, Brattleboro, Vermont 
6 CE Contact Hours

Click here for additional information regarding CE contact hours for specific disciplines.

Patricia Papernow, EdD

What conference participants wrote about Dr. Papernow when she presented the same conference in 2014: 

•    Very well organized; speaker had a nice style for presenting. Good information on parenting styles, parenting task and child well-being.
•    I would recommend this workshop to any of my coworkers. Dr. Papernow is very knowledgeable and easy to understand.
•    What an amazing speaker. Very relevant and important- meets the needs of the population I work with.
•    This was a wonderful presentation; I loved Patricia’s teaching style and her inclusion of her personal experience. She is very knowledgeable.
•    Patricia is great! So informative, warm, gracious, funny, genuine.

Click here to Register

Course Description: 

The term “blended family” captures the fervent wishes stepcouples often bring for connection and a fresh start.  The realities often involve “resistant” children and anxious, confused adults struggling with intense feelings of “insiderness” and “outsiderness,”  questions about discipline, “appropriate” rules, and ever-present ex-spouse relationships.  Whether working with individuals or kids, couples or families, Dr. Papernow will help participants recognize the five major predictable challenges stepfamilies face.  She will provide psychoeducational, interpersonal, and individual interventions for successfully navigating these often intense and divisive forces.

Learning Objectives - at the end of this conference, participants will be able to: 

1.  Describe the fundamental differences between first-time families and stepfamilies
2. Describe the challenges that stepfamily structure creates for parents, stepparents, and couples in stepfamilies
3. Describe the challenges children in stepfamilies face
4. Describe three levels of clinical intervention 
5. List concrete, evidence-informed strategies to meet stepfamily challenges

Patricia Papernow, EdD, is an internationally recognized authority on stepfamilies and the recipient of the 2017 APA Division 43 award for Distinguished Contribution to Family Psychology. A skilled presenter, she is the author of two of the classic clinical books in the field as well as numerous articles and book chapters. 

Register Now

Or click here to return to the complete list of Brattleboro Retreat conferences
Any questions? Please call 802-258-4359.
Friday, November 9, 2018
The Brattleboro Retreat, Brattleboro, Vermont

8:00 AM - 8:30 AM
Coffee and Registration
8:30 AM - 9:15  AM
           Claire and Gary                                                                            
           The Numbers!         
Internal Family Systems 101
How Stepfamilies Are Different
 Stepfamilies Come in Many Forms
 The Map: 5 Challenges and Three Levels of Intervention
                 The Five Challenges of “Stepfamily Architecture”

                 Three Levels of Intervention
  1. Psychoeducational:  What’s normal, what works, and what doesn’t
  2. Interpersonal:  Increasing connection and empathy
  3. Intrapsychic:  “Papernow’s Bruise Theory of Feelings”
9:15 AM - 10:00 AM
              Meeting the 5 Challenges   

              First ChallengeInsider/outsider positions are intense.  And “stuck”.
10:00 AM -10:15 AM
     Break and Refreshments 
10:15 AM - 10:30 AM                      First challenge, continued
10:30 AM - 11:30  AM
             Second Challenge:   Children struggle with losses, loyalty,  and lots of change.             
11:30 AM - 11:45 AM
11:45 AM - 12:00 PM              Questions 
12:00 PM - 12:45 PM
    Third Challenge:  Parenting tasks divide parents and stepparents.
12:45 PM - 1:45 PM
     Lunch (in the Retreat cafeteria and included with your registration)
1:45 PM - 2:00 PM
2:00 PM - 2:30 PM                 Fourth Challenge:  Stepcouples must build a new family culture while respecting
                                                 already-established cultures.   
2:30 PM - 3:15 PM              Fifth challenge: Ex-spouses are part of the family   
3:15 PM - 3:45 PM              Thriving in Stepfamily Relationships
3:45 PM - 4:00 PM
    Wrap–up and Questions