You have a lot of thoughts and emotions to sift through after divorcing your spouse, but so does your child. How can you help your son or daughter?
The American Academy of Pediatrics offers insights for supporting children during divorce. Set yourself and your child up for success after dissolving your marriage.
You may find it hard to focus on the positive after splitting from your spouse but try for your child. Your thinking style affects how your child navigates divorce, so provide a positive example. You need not be overly positive. Aim for taking a realistic view, but help your child realize the good things.
Just as co-parent conflict may spike your stress levels, it stresses children out, too. Do your part to minimize stress between yourself and the other parent.
Stay in your child’s life
Even when your child stays with the other parent, try to remain in her or his life. Focus on knowing about your child’s interests, what she or he likes and dislikes, and your child’s problems. Help with homework when possible, and continue to act as a source of emotional support.
Practice consistent parenting
Children of divorced parents often require consistency to thrive. Sustain behavior expectations and house rules, no matter the household. If your son or daughter only has two hours of screen time at your ex’s house, try to maintain the same rules at your place. This level of consistency requires keeping in touch with the other parent, which may mean improving your communication style with your ex.
Parents and children alike deserve mental and emotional support during and after divorce. The right tips help everyone achieve peace of mind.