Bezahler says she and her stepdaughter have entered “a whole new phase of our relationship. The dynamic has shifted from her reliance on us to something more mutual.” Her stepdaughter is reading biographies of Bob Dylan and Marilyn Monroe, and Bezahler and her husband enjoy talking about what these icons meant to them. “But she’s also been able to give us an understanding of how those celebrities fit into contemporary culture and how, for example, this woman who was such a complicated vision of femininity, and who had such baggage, can play out in someone like Lady Gaga taking that stuff into a more empowered direction,” Bezahler says. She adds that her stepdaughter “was always an interesting kid—but she was an interesting kid.” Now they’re getting to know each other more as equals. Says Newman: “This is a time that can lead to a real quality relationship between adults. Maybe even a better one than you would have had if the child hadn’t come home.”
Originally published in the February 2011 issue of More.