All publications are also listed in our library catalogue.

The effects of co-parenting relationships with ex-spouses on couples in step-families

Claire Cartwright and Kerry Gibson
Family Matters No. 92, 2013

This article explores shared-parenting relationships after a former spouse has repartnered. It presents findings from interviews with 16 couples, recruited from the Couples in Repartnered (Step-) Families study in New Zealand. The couples discussed themes of co-parenting issues with former spouses, stresses on the new stepfamily, and conflict over parenting, flexible arrangements, and child support.

Relationships with step-parents in the life stories of young adults of divorce

Claire Cartwright, Virginia Farnsworth and Vicki Mobley
Family Matters No. 82, 2009

Many children spend part of their childhood living in a step-family household and in recent years, researchers have concluded that compared to children and adolescents in non-divorced families, those in step-families are at increased risk of developing emotional and behavioural problems.

Promoting healthy stepfamilies: Couples' reasons for seeking help and perceived benefits from intervention

Jan Nicholson, Maddy Phillips, Sarah Whitton, Kim Halford and Matthew Sanders
Family Matters No. 77, 2007

Stepfamilies are challenging environments that can threaten the health and wellbeing of family members. Yet the reluctance of stepfamily members to seek assistance through family interventions has been well documented. This paper reviews research on interventions for stepfamilies, and examines Australian data from a stepfamily program designed to promote healthy stepfamily relationships (The 'StepPrep' program). It explores the reasons why some stepfamilies seek help and the gains they report from stepfamily interventions.

Snapshot of couple families with stepparent-child relationships

Lixia Qu and Ruth Weston
Family Matters No. 70, 2005

Stepparent-child relationships that cross household boundaries, through the repartnering of a non resident parent (typically the father) are rarely documented in statistics on family types. In this article the authors explore the prevalence of these relationships within households and of those that cross household boundaries. The authors provide a snapshot which highlights the complicated stepparent - child arrangements that exist as a result of the changing pathways to stepfamily formation.

Relationships of children in stepfamilies with their non-resident fathers

Marjorie Smith
Family Matters No. 67, 2004

The number of children living in stepfamilies is increasing. Most of these children have another parent (usually the father) who is not resident in the household but with whom they have some contact. Children's views of the frequency of this contact, and the quality of father-child and other family relationships were explored in a recent study undertaken in the UK between 1998 and 2002. 'The Study of Stepchildren and Step-parenting', is reported on in this article.

Stepfathers in children's lives

Kate Funder, Simon Kinsella and Peta Courtney
Family Matters No. 31, 1992

This paper uses data from the Institute of Family Studies' Parents and Children after Marriage Breakdown study to investigate how children adjust to being in a stepfamily, and how they feel about their stepfathers. The study points to the happy incorporation of stepfathers into the families of about two-thirds of the adolescents in the sample. Stepfathers who are perceived to have a low involvement appear to be in the happiest homes. Conditions in the family before the arrival of the stepfather may, however, be quite important to how involved the stepfather becomes with his stepchildren.