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Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 13:06
by WilliamFrier
Hi all,

Just a question about step children entry. My scenario is, My mother and father divorced, both remarried divorcees who both have children from their first marriages as well. I know all information about the other families, so when I have entered the information into FH and then look at it in the focus window my mother and father show as having no step children. in their second marriages. I then added them as step children and now that they show as step children, when I look at the families in a diagram the step children show up twice (once in each marriage), including all of their children etc. What is the best way to enter this in FH?

Am I best to leave step daughters in each marriage just as part of the first marriage or am I right to add them as step daughters and accept that they show up as kids in both marriages?

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 14:06
by ColeValleyGirl
This is a matter of personal choice and (you know what I'm going to say) depends on how you want the output to look.

I only add the children to their birth parents, for simplicity, but if there are individuals in your family who want to see the data presented with them in both families, you may might choose to do this for the sake of family peace.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 14:12
by Gowermick
I don’t enter step children as step-children per se, I just enter them as normal under their biological parents. Their position in the focus window lets me see whose children they are (and whose step-children they are).
In the case of illegitimate children of a woman, I create another family for the woman (with no spouse), then add the child to this single parent family. If she then marries, this is added as a second family for the woman, and subsequent children are added to this new family.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 14:18
by AdrianBruce
If the children lived in a family with their step-parent, then I will enter them as step-children to their step-parent in the later family. As you say, this then can result in multiple appearances that are essentially, a bit of a mess in a diagram. So if I'm going to be working with a diagram for any length of time and don't want to see the multiple appearances, I simply select the later (usually) repeat of the box in the diagram and hide it. That way the diagram isn't cluttered with stuff that I already know but equally I've still got the basic data recorded in case I want to do a more localised diagram and / or report.

When you close that diagram, you will be asked if you want to save the changes - unless I spent ages tweaking the diagram, I'll just say No to that and re-do the closures the next time I'm working on that group.

As you will see, it's very much personal whether you even record them as step-children in the first place - my criteria is that if there's a social grouping, a family living together with their step-parent, then I will record them as step-children. If there's no sign that they lived together, I won't.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 15:22
by tatewise
William, you say: "in a diagram the step children show up twice (once in each marriage), including all of their children etc."
Only the step children should show up twice, linked by coloured ribbons, but their children should only appear once.

If you don't get the coloured ribbons and the grandchildren are shown twice, then you've entered those children & grandchildren incorrectly as duplicated Individual records.

When adding such children via the Add Child links, you MUST use the Add Existing Record option, and then set the Relationship to Step for just one of the Parents.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 16:01
by Jane
Mike is correct, but make sure you have check for duplicates turned on.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 18:00
by WilliamFrier
Checked again, my step sister, husband and child showed up once when I did a diagram for my dad but if I did the same diagram for my step mum they all showed up twice. One for each marriage. There is something (not sure how to best describe it) that kind of shows that both of the families are one and the same.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 18:49
by tatewise
The key factor that determines whether those people are the same Individual records or duplicates is their Record Id.

In a Diagram where people are shown twice, double-click on any duplicated box to open the Property Box and view the All tab, which shows the Record Id near the top.
Leave that Property Box open and click on the duplicate of that same person and check their Record Id.

If pairs of the same person have the same Record Id then they are one and the same Individual, which is OK.
If those people pairs have different Record Id then they are two separate database Individual records that happen to have the same Name, etc, and that is wrong.

If you make your dad (and then your step-mum) the focus person in the Focus Window you should be able to perform similar checks for the Record Id of the children, and on the Descendants tab you can check children and grandchildren.
If you use the Customize View... options to enable Record Ids then you don't even need to open their Property Boxes as the Record Id are shown in square brackets.

If still in doubt, please attach some screenshots of the Diagrams or Focus Window.
See Knowledge Base > Posting Topics for advice on posting screenshots.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 19:46
by WilliamFrier
They are the same person Mike I had already checked that. Here is a screenshot from the diagram, I had removed their child to check if that made any difference but it didn't. When the child was there the only difference it made was on one side she was showing and on the other side the expansion button had been clicked, so that she was hidden. It doesn't make that much difference to me either way, I was just checking with you all if there was a proper way to deal with this kind of thing in FH before I added them into the new tree when I redo it.
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2019-06-07.png (8.41 KiB) Viewed 340 times

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 20:07
by WilliamFrier
ColeValleyGirl wrote:This is a matter of personal choice and (you know what I'm going to say) depends on how you want the output to look.

thought you were going to say use AS :lol: . I also just add them to birth parents for simplicity, but I noticed a topic about step children in the Census and that got me thinking their may be something on FH that gave an elaborate solution to this. I was more interested in a solution for another relative who had a child from a short term relationship (Months rather than years) and when she got married a few years later her new husband brought him up as his along with their own two children. The boy calls him dad and I wouldn't want him not to show up along with his step sisters in a tree diagram if I printed one off for my relative. I suppose making the link before I sent it to print then removing the link afterwards would be the easiest solution.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 20:10
by tatewise
That coloured ribbon (the default setting) clearly indicates and links the boxes of the same people in the two family groups.

It was your description that the grandchildren were shown twice that sowed some doubts, because by default only one set of grandchildren should be shown and the others hidden. I assume you must have clicked the expansion button of the hidden set, to reveal them, but forgot to mention that. When both sets are shown then they will also be linked by coloured ribbons, if they are the same records.

This scenario of the same people having two or more relationships within your tree is quite common where ancestral 'cousins' have married. The people are shown in each of their family groups, and linked by coloured ribbons. There are options to hide the ribbons if you wish.

You could record that child in the 'family' with his mother and unknown father, and also as a step-child of her later husband.
Then in Diagrams you can hide the child in either 'family' and also the mother's relationship with the unknown father as desired.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 20:38
by WilliamFrier
Mike I think that is the solution I would use for that family, but I have quite a few scenario's like this in my family and I am quite sure if I did put them all through as step kids I would end up missing one when I printed it out and have a rude message on my phone before the ink dried. I will have a think about the best solution for me, for the redo.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 20:58
by tatewise
Once you have 'designed' your Diagram with the necessary boxes hidden, you can save that as a Family Historian Chart which will preserve that arrangement, but at the same time will add any new data or people you add to the tree. That way you won't need to remember to hide those established boxes and only need to worry about hiding new boxes.

Re: Step child entry

Posted: 07 Jun 2019 22:13
by WilliamFrier
Cheers for that Mike, another problem solved.