2016 AFTNC Annual Conference

Friday October 21st- Sunday October 23rd, 2016


Patricia Papernow

“Surviving & Thriving in Stepfamily Relationships:

What Works & What Doesn’t?”

Westerbeke Ranch, Sonoma, CA

Step-couples enter their new families longing for, and often expecting, blissful blending and a fresh start. They come for help because they all too often find themselves struggling with unhappy, “resistant” children, caught in conflicts over parenting and discipline, feeling confused about the stepparent’s role, facing uncooperative ex-spouses, and dealing with differences about everything from the “appropriate” cost of a pair of sneakers, to whether Grape Nuts is a breakfast food or a form of cardboard. Indeed, the experiential divides created by stepfamily structure can leave both children and adults feeling terribly alone and everyone feeling lost and frustrated.

Stepfamilies can be healthy happy families and good places to raise children.  However, what it takes to make a strong stepfamily is, in many ways, quite different from a first-time family. Several decades of research and clinical work tell us a lot about what works (and what doesn’t) to build thriving stepfamilies. However, even though 42% of American adults have a close step relationship, few mental health professionals receive any training in this area.

Whether you work with adults or children, with individuals, couples, or families, with young people or with older adults, this engaging and practical conference will leave you feeling clearer, more compassionate, more confident, and more effective. Dr. Papernow will integrate almost four decades of clinical experience with her solid understanding of the research to provide you with immediately applicable tools for helping stepfamily members to meet their challenges and develop solid satisfying relationships.

Dr. Patricia Papernow is an internationally recognized expert on stepfamilies and post-divorce parenting. Her most recent book, is Surviving and Thriving in Stepfamily Relationships.  She is a psychologist in private practice in Hudson, MA, and Director of the Institute for Stepfamily Education.

Workshop Outline
Registration Form

Pay Online

Come Join us for an engaging weekend in the

Beautiful Napa Valley at Westerbeke Ranch


Westerbeke Ranch is a wonderful serene location where AFTNC has held their conference for many years.  There are cabins for those staying overnight, day attendees and overnight attendees are welcome to the facilities use of the pool, hiking trails, hot tub, and massages (addtional rates apply for massages).  All attendees are provided a gourmet lunch by the amazing chefs at Westerbeke.  Overnight attendees have breakfast and dinner included in addition to lunch. Attendees not staying overnight may join us for dinner for an additional fee. 
This year, we are going to have conference content on Friday evening. This is in part because Westerbeke Ranch requires us to pay for Friday night beds, even if we don't use them, so we are are encouraging folks to get there on Friday night. Attendees who can only be there on Saturday and Sunday will still get a great conference, even if they miss the beginning of the conference. The total number of Continuing Education hours will reflect these changes, and will be available if one only attends part of the weekend.


Detailed Schedule Link  

Friday October 21

Saturday October 22

Sunday October 23


Registration begins at 8:30am

Registration begins at 8:30am


Part II: 9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Part IV: 9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Registration:  5:00pm

Lunch: 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm

Student lunch w/Patricia 1:00-2:00

Lunch: 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm

Dinner with the Presenter

Part III: 2:00 pm – 4:30 pm

Part V: 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm

Part I: 7:00 – 8:30PM


Dinner: 6:00 pm (Overnights)

Charades: 7:30 pm

Adjourn 3:30 pm

  12.5 Hours of Continuing Education

Early Registration Due by Saturday October 1st, 2016.
All postmarked or email registration received after October 1st will be considered late.

Conference Costs and Lodging/Meals Options:
There a few rooms left for the full conference.


Member Early

Member Late

Non Member Early

Non Member Late

Full Conference (Fri & Sat)
Two nights/6 meals





Student Full Conference
Two nights/ 6 meals





Two Day Conference
(Sat/Sun; 2 lunches)





Student Two Day Conference
(Sat/Sun; 2 lunches)





One Day Conference
(1 Day; 1 lunch; and day use)





Student One Day Conference
(1 Day; 1 lunch; and day use)










For CE certificate (12.5 hours total), Please add $25 to registration payment. Partial credit available for One or Two Dauys, still $25.

Above costs include: Overnight charges include shared cabins with baths, daily use fees at Westerbeke Ranch, dinners for the nights you stay over, Saturday and Sunday breakfasts, and lunches. Day-only rates include daily use fees and lunches. No dinner is provided on Sunday. 

              *Conference is limited to 17 overnight guests and 90 total participants.*             
**Scholarships and Work Study are available for those with financial needs**  

Pay Online  

Please download, print out, and mail in form below to:
Sarah Stearns

1612 Josephine Street, Berkeley CA 94703

or email to smstearns@juno.com



Please also download the Release & Waiver, Guest Guidelines, and Travel Directions:

Release and Waiver 
Travel Directions

Guest Guidelines for Westerbeke Ranch 

CEs are provided by The Spiritual Competency Resources CenterCEs for psychologists are provided by the Spiritual Competency Resource Center which is co-sponsoring this program. Spiritual Competency Resource Center is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Spiritual Competency Resource Center maintains responsibility for the program and its content. SCRC is a California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN Provider CEP10318) for licensed nurses in CAlifornia through the cosponsorship of Institute of Noetic SciencesCalifornia Board of Behavioral Sciences accepts CE credits for license renewal by LCSWs and MFTs for programs from approved sponsors of CE by the American Psychological Association. For questions about CE visit www.spiritualcompetency.com or contactDavid Lukoff, PhD at david.lukoff@gmail.com

Ram Gokul Scholarship Fund (Donate Here): AFTNC has created a scholarship fund in honor of the late Ram Gokul to help support members committed to family therapy who otherwise would not be able to afford to attend the conference. If you are interested in applying for the scholarship fund, please contact Jay Smith.

For information about anything above or any additional questions you may have, please contact Sarah Stearns at smstearns@juno.com