Stepfamily Role play                                                              Name ___________________



      Three years have passed. Each parent has just remarried, so you're forming a 3-home, 6-co-parent nuclear stepfamily. Define this new family by noting names, ages, occupations, dwelling features, some key roles, and features of your first Thanksgiving celebration. 

 How long have you new partners known each other? _______________________________

 How well do your stepsibs know each other?  _ not at all   _ moderately  _ well

 Do the biomom and stepmom know each other?  _ not at all  _ moderately  _ well

Members: Decide who comprises your nuclear stepfamily now, and list them. Note who's last names have changed, and how that feels:

Our Nuclear Stepfamily

                    First and Last Names



Co-parent 1


Co-parent 2


Co-parent 3


Co-parent 4


Co-parent 5


Co-parent 6


Child 1


Child 2


Child 3


Child 4


Your stepfamily's religion/s, if any: ________________   Members attend church? Y / N 

Your gross household income: $ _____,000/month, including incoming and outgoing child support.

Your co-parents' ethnic heritage/s: ______________________________________________

Household pet/s, if any (kind/s & name/s): ________________________________________

Your household location and dwelling: _ city    _ suburb   _ small town  _ farm

_ house  _ apartment or condo (which floor? ____)   _ 2-flat  _ other: ________________

# of floors: _____   # of bedrooms: _____   # of bathrooms _____   Is there a garage? _____

Fireplace/s? _____     Porch(es)? _____     Family (recreation) room? _____? 

Air-conditioned? Y / N    Yard/s: _ none   _ small   _ medium   _ big

Are there any changes in child custody?  Y / N    If so, what are they, and why?

Child Visitations

How often will each of your adult’s kids see their non-custodial parents? Note: ex mates check with each other to resolve any uncertainties or conflicts.


Dad: _____________________________________________________________________

Where will each visiting child sleep?


Do they each have their own bed, closet, drawers, and/or shelves in your home?  (Y  /  N)

How will the kids get to their other home and back?

Who makes any needed special arrangements for each child to visit?


Responsibilities -  in your stepfamily home, who usually…

 Takes out the garbage? _____________________________________________________ 

 Does the laundry? _________________________________________________________

 Pays the bills? ____________________________________________________________

 Plans/cooks meals? ________________________________________________________

 Buys the food: ____________________________________________________________

 Makes child discipline rules? _________________________________________________

 Enforces these rules? ______________________________________________________

 Makes the major household decisions? _________________________________________

 How should visiting stepchildren contribute to these chores, if at all?


Option: answer these questions for your kids’ “other home," too. What do you notice?




Special Factors

      Note anything special that currently affects your stepfamily members – e.g. someone has a significant health problem, a financial problem, a pregnancy, a recent death, a new job, a graduation, an accident, an inheritance, a legal suit, … (Don’t overdo this…)




Favorite Stepfamily Events

1) _________________________________________________________________________

2) _________________________________________________________________________ 

3) _________________________________________________________________________

Plan Your First Stepfamily Thanksgiving: Divorced bioparents check with ex-mates to agree on time, travel, and other arrangements for your kids. 

Held where? ________________________________________________________________ 

Who's Invited? _______________________________________________________________



Arrival time: __________ Leave time: ____________

Who cooks? ______________________________________

Main dishes / desserts: ______________________________________________________

 Liquor/wine provided?  Y / N;  Church before or after? Y / N

Will any visiting kids stay overnight?  Y / N  

If so, where will they sleep?___________________________________________________

How will they get back to their other home?


Other family activities e.g. prayers / photos / music / games...


How does this first stepfamily Thanksgiving feel to your closest main relatives?


What differences in _ emotions and _ logistics do you notice between this Thanksgiving and your prior absent-parent family and biofamily traditions?





How will those differences affect the quality of this stepfamily event for you adults and kids? Option: co-parents ask each of your custodial kids, and tell them how you feel…  



      If your stepfamily finishes these questions before the others, discuss (a) changes you note from your biofamily Thanksgivings (per worksheet #1); and (b) any other details you haven’t explored or defined about your new-stepfamily situation. Are you all identifying as a stepfamily?

Thoughts / feelings / awarenesses…