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Let's Talk About It: Stepfamilies

Fred Rogers opens the door for stepfamilies to safely talk about their good and sometimes not-so-good feelings by encouraging both parents and children to communicate. While he acknowledges that difficult situations will probably arise, he emphasizes that the joy of belonging is what all families are really about.

Written in simple language and accompanied by full-color photographs, offers a reassuring discussion of stepfamilies. Rogers shows compassion and an understanding of young children as he stresses the importance of communication and the sharing of feelings. Fred Rogers sets the tone by talking about the small changes in a child's life, such as birthdays, starting school, and making new friends. Gradually, he addresses the inevitable changes a family goes through when a parent remarries. Nothing is sugarcoated, and many concerns that children face in stepfamily situations are raised: getting used to new rules and taking orders from a stepparent who is "not my real mother." For Mister Rogers, it is important that children talk about their feelings and share their fears. He tries to make them aware of different kinds of love; love for family members, friends, and pets and that it is natural to feel confused and scared. A gentle, upbeat presentation that will both answer most questions and prompt others.

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