Title

Overcoming the Cinderella Myth: A Mixed Methods Study of Successful Stepmothers

Keywords

Stepmothers, roles, success, coping, stepfamilies

Abstract

Using a family systems framework, a mixed methods approach was used to understand the challenges, resources and coping strategies of stepmothers. The Delphi method was used to identify the primary challenges of stepmothers. Ethnographic interviews with self-described “successful” stepmothers were then conducted to better understand these challenges and the coping methods and styles used to manage them. Analysis resulted in thematic content related to role and contextual challenges. Coping themes included the importance of positive communication, attitudes and attributes, marital quality, as well as formal and informal supports. Suggestions for researchers and practitioners are provided.

Original Publication Citation

Whiting, J. B., Smith, D., Barnett, T. & Grafsky, E. (2007). Overcoming the Cinderella myth: A mixed methods study of successful stepmothers. Journal of Divorce and Remarriage, 47. 95-109. doi: doi.org/10.1300/J087v47n01_06

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date

2008-09-25

Publisher

Journal of Divorce & Remarriage

Language

English

College

Family, Home, and Social Sciences

Department

Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor

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