o Contrary to myth, stepfamilies have a high rate of success in raising healthy children. Eighty percent of the kids come out fine.
o These stepkids are resilient, and a movement to study their resilience--not just their problems--promises to help more kids succeed in any kind of family, traditional or otherwise.
o What trips stepkids up has little to do with stepfamilies per se. The biggest source of problems for kids in stepfamilies is parental conflict leftover from the first marriage.
o A detailed understanding of the specific problems stepfamilies encounter now exists, courtesy of longitudinal research--not studies that tap just the first six months of stepfamily adjustment.
o Stepfamilies turn out to be a gender trap--expectations about women's roles and responsibilities are at the root of many problems that develop in stepfamilies.
o After five years, stepfamilies are more stable than first-marriage families, because second marriages are happier than first marriages. Stepfamilies experience most of their troubles in the first two years.