This holiday season, many Americans may need a flow chart to figure how theyâ€™re all related. What do you call, for example, your stepmotherâ€™s sonâ€™s live-in girlfriendâ€™s 11-year-old son?
As family structures become more complicated, a new body of new research is attempting to quantify the trend. The proliferation of stepchildren, half-siblings, and other extended relationships has important implications for how American families function.
Almost a third of U.S. households headed by adults under age 55 have at least one stepparent, according to a recent analysis of survey data by University of Massachusetts Boston Professor Emily Wiemers and others. Similarly, the study found that, looking at couples over age 55 who have adult children, 33 percent have a stepchild....
It doesn't make sense--a divorce means a splitting up of a family, thus creating 2 smaller units. Generally, the court decides on who gets the kids, usually they end up with the mother.
The husband is off on his own, a smaller family unit, though he may marry someone else.
I doubt he would seek another woman with children of her own.
Do statistics back this up? I don't know, but I've heard that divorced women with children have a harder time getting married again as compared to those without children. In dating, I've heard the kids referred to as 'kid bombs' because they destroy the guy's interest in the woman. He wasn't buying into all that! And sometimes the mother is very suspicious of men in general, and in these days of "Harvey R" going around, she would be justified to not marry again.
The problems that are mentioned in the article certainly will give programmers for genealogy apps a hard time.
However, this short article that SA linked to, pointed out some serious problems that make the above difficulty miniscule. the mangled family life of Americans should give people pause for thought. King David's family life, is in some ways reflected in the American family life--of too many people anyway.