When I was growing up there was no such thing as a “blended” family.
There was still a strong social stigma attached to divorce and I dare say plenty of people felt trapped in a marriage they could not leave.
While there was no white picket fence around the comfortable four-bedroom house in the cul-de-sac where my family lived, there was no divorce or separation either.There was me, my two sisters and our parents. Mum and Dad were married 42 years till his death.
It was all very middle-class and conservative. Dad earned the dough and he was the boss. Mum ran the house and organised us kids. Sure, there were arguments and fallouts and us kids got whacked when we stepped out line. But that was the done thing.
And that generation held it together, stayed together and saved face – right? In fact, I can only remember one friend who lived in a single-parent home.
How times have changed: Nearly 20 per cent of children are now growing up in single-parent households, according to the last census. Nearly two out of five kids live in a blended family.My wife and I share six children from previous relationships and of course our marriage.
I’m sure all this has been talked about within my family. In fact I know it has been. I will have been judged. I will have been judged as a failure. And maybe I am.
But this is my reality and I’m in good company. Nowadays half of all marriages fail. Blended families are everywhere.