Dakota en­rols at ‘Step­mom School’

(it’s an LA thing!)

Grazia (UK) - - 10 HOT STORIES -

Dakota John­son is clearly very much a part of the Martin/pal­trow/falchuk ‘mod­ern fam­ily’. Just weeks after mak­ing her pub­lic de­but with Gwyneth, the ac­tress – and girl­friend of Chris – has now been spot­ted on a cof­fee run with the former cou­ple’s daugh­ter, Ap­ple, 14.

In­deed, Grazia un­der­stands that be­hind the scenes, Dakota, 29, has en­listed the help of a ‘step­mom coach’ to help her im­merse her­self in fam­ily life.

Ap­par­ently, she’s been con­sult­ing Allison Task, a tran­si­tion coach. When con­tacted, Allison de­clined to name her clients but ex­plained the process of the ‘step­mom coach­ing’ ses­sions that she of­fers.

‘Firstly, step­mom coach­ing is about cre­at­ing a safe en­vi­ron­ment where you can say the things you’re afraid to say and give voice to the feel­ings you have that you might be afraid to ac­knowl­edge,’ she said.

The hour-long ses­sions, which cost $300-$400 each, are di­rected at re­set­ting the bound­aries be­tween the step-parent and child. ‘It’s im­por­tant to work col­lab­o­ra­tively as a team and define bound­aries as ap­pro­pri­ate,’ she added. ‘I let peo­ple rage and speak their feel­ings, mak­ing sure that they don’t feel guilty or judged.’

The main is­sue with be­ing a step-parent, Allison con­tin­ues, is so­cial prej­u­dice. ‘So­ci­ety doesn’t know what to do with a step­mom. There’s an an­tag­o­nism be­tween bi­o­log­i­cal moms and step­moms so so­ci­ety has some work to do to em­brace al­ter­na­tive parenting. ’

‘My job is not about solv­ing peo­ple’s prob­lems, but let­ting them solve their own,’ she said. ‘If you see some­one do­ing the same thing over and over again, it’s tempt­ing to jump in. But it’s not for me to re­alise.’

As Grazia re­cently re­ported, Dakota and Gwyneth, 46, were pho­tographed to­gether at Derek Blas­berg’s birth­day last month. The jour­nal­ist and so­cialite cap­tioned the Instagram ‘con­sciously throu­pling’ – a nod to Gwyneth and Chris’s split state­ment.

It was Gwyneth and Dakota’s first pub­lic ap­pear­ance to­gether, which marked a new, am­i­ca­ble phase for their re­la­tion­ship. Sources con­firmed to Grazia that there was ini­tial fric­tion be­tween the pair, and that Dakota was al­legedly ‘banned’ from Gwyneth’s wedding to pro­ducer Brad Falchuk last year. But since Dakota and Chris have be­come more se­ri­ous, the ac­tor has been wel­comed into the fold and Gwyneth has been sup­port­ive of her spend­ing time with the chil­dren.

In Jan­uary, Dakota and Chris joined Gwyneth, Brad, Ap­ple and Moses (their 12-year-old son) on hol­i­day in the Mal­dives. Gwyneth is vo­cal about hav­ing a healthy, un­con­ven­tional fam­ily, so it’s un­sur­pris­ing that she’s now ac­cepted Dakota. Watch this space for a com­plete fam­ily Christ­mas card come De­cem­ber.

Main: Dakota out with Ap­ple. Top: Derek Blas­berg with Dakota and Gwyneth at his birth­day party. Right: the ac­tor and Chris

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