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ron deal president of smart stepfamilies

Ron Deal

Ron Deal is one of the most widely read and viewed experts on blended families in the nation. He directs the blended family ministry at FamilyLife and is the author of more than a dozen books and resources including the best-selling The Smart Stepfamily and Building Love Together in Blended Families: The 5 Love Languages® and Becoming Stepfamily Smart with Dr. Gary Chapman. Ron is a licensed marriage and family therapist, a popular conference speaker, and the host of the podcast FamilyLife Blended . His work has been referenced by numerous major media outlets including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today. Ron and his wife, Nan, have three sons and live in Little Rock, Arkansas. Learn more about Ron at his website, rondeal.org.

A couple with three kids from a blended stepfamily after remarriage navigate crossing a creek by stepping over rocks.

Is Remarriage Right for You and Your Future Stepfamily?

Understanding the challenges of stepfamily living can help you make an informed decision about remarriage.

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Are You Ready to Remarry? (Part 2 of 2)

Ron Deal describes some of the unique challenges that couples experience through remarriage and the formation of a stepfamily. He discusses the importance of drawing a “family map,” to identify the complex web of relationships with kids, stepkids, ex-spouses and their partners, and extended family. (Part 2 of 2)

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Are You Ready to Remarry? (Part 1 of 2)

Ron Deal describes some of the unique challenges that couples experience through remarriage and the formation of a stepfamily. He discusses the importance of drawing a “family map,” to identify the complex web of relationships with kids, stepkids, ex-spouses and their partners, and extended family. (Part 1 of 2)

Unhappy-married-couple-sitting-on-bed-not-looking-at-each-other

Blended Family Marriage: 5 Sexual Pitfalls to Avoid

Blended family marriages face unique stressors that can affect a couple’s sexual relationship. Here are five sexual pitfalls to avoid.

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Improving Your Marriage as a Blended Family Couple (Part 2 of 2)

Author and speaker Ron Deal offers couples in blended families advice on how they can assess the strengths of their marriage and improve on areas of weakness in light of the particular challenges they face in parenting stepchildren. (Part 2 of 2)

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Improving Your Marriage as a Blended Family Couple (Part 1 of 2)

Author and speaker Ron Deal offers couples in blended families advice on how they can assess the strengths of their marriage and improve on areas of weakness in light of the particular challenges they face in parenting stepchildren. (Part 1 of 2)

Husband and wife kissing in front of kids prioritizing marriage in a their family

Prioritizing Marriage in a Blended Family

Consider the following ways to partner with your spouse and prioritize marriage in a blended family.

Cultivating Love in Blended Families (Part 2 of 2)

Cultivating Love in Blended Families (Part 2 of 2)

Dr. Gary Chapman and Ron Deal explore the unique challenges blended families face and offer practical advice for cultivating healthy, loving relationships. Topics include navigating your role as a stepparent, helping stepsiblings get along well, connecting with adult stepchildren, and more. (Part 2 of 2)

Cultivating Love in Blended Families (Part 1 of 2)

Cultivating Love in Blended Families (Part 1 of 2)

Dr. Gary Chapman and Ron Deal explore the unique challenges blended families face and offer practical advice for cultivating healthy, loving relationships. Topics include navigating your role as a stepparent, helping stepsiblings get along well, connecting with adult stepchildren, and more. (Part 1 of 2)

couple working on a shared vision for finances

Creating a Shared Vision for Blended Family Finances

Every couple needs to talk about their values related to money and how they will create a shared vision for combining incomes and debt while planning for the future care of their children.

Illustration of a mom and dad putting out a fire

Extinguishing Marital Conflict

Marriage conflict often involves more than simply an issue over which the couple disagrees. How the couple interacts and the negative feelings experienced by each person also affect communication.

The Ex Factor in Your Blended Family

Parents who are in a second marriage often have to make difficult choices. But they can’t afford to let their fear of what an ex might do overrun their commitment to their current marriage.

Three young kids hanging out on their parents’ bed with their mom and dad

The Smart Blended Marriage

Most remarried couples can beat the odds of divorce and build a successful blended family if they know how to overcome the unique barriers to marital intimacy in a blended family.

How to Merge Right

Tips for blending stepfamilies.

When Values Collide

Parents can and should try to safeguard their children from the influence of the world, but when the “world” is the other household, parents face a difficult challenge.

Don’t Lose Your Child’s Heart

We have a great relationship, but ever since his father remarried, his stepmom has started putting these thoughts in his head about me.

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Ghost Whispers

Ghosts from the past can create intimacy wedges in remarriage. Learning to recognize your ghosts and manage them is one path to increase your marital confidence and intimacy.

Father holding his young son, who's holding his smiling mom's hand

So, Where’s the Honeymoon?

Unrealistic expectations create disillusionment when your hopes are not realized. Realistic expectations for your blended family give much need perspective and guidance for a fulfilling family experience.

remarriage-sex-dont-get-caught-in-past-sexual-experiences

How to Overcome Past Sexual Experiences in a Remarriage

God intended sexuality to be a wonderful gift for married couples. Remarriage presents some unique barriers to sexual intimacy, but each of them can be overcome.

A family walks together together down the beach holding hands.

Maximize Your Fun-Factor

In the business of life, couples in blended families often stop connecting through shared leisure time. They simply spend their time on other things. But, wise remarried couples recognize the importance of leisure, and they maximize their fun-factor.

The Smart Stepparent

How to discover your place in your stepchild’s life.

Living in a Stepfamily

Living in a Stepfamily

Teens with a stepmom or stepdad need help learning how to manage the emotions surrounding a new stepfamily and how to adjust to having a stepparent and stepsiblings.

Stepparenting: It Takes Two

Contrary to what you may think, stepparenting is a two-person task. Learn how both parents can positively shape their stepfamily’s future while also cultivating their present too.

smart stepparenting

The Guide to Smart Stepparenting

Many people assume that stepparenting is the sole responsibility of the stepparent. On the contrary, it is a two-person task.