A divorce is hard on everyone, but none so much as your children. You might not see it but children will feel extremely anxious and hurt by a divorce. Many children go on to believe that the divorce was their fault or that they now need to choose which parent to live with.
I know first-hand how difficult this time is for you and your children, which is why I’ve put together my top tips to help you and your children cope with split custody and visitation after divorce.
Following a tough separation, the last thing you might feel like doing is talking to your ex-partner, never mind actually agreeing with them, but it is essential if you want to keep things running smoothly at home.
You need to keep things positive at home and being a parent is more important than anything else, which is why you need to collaborate with your ex-husband, present a united front and keep things as peaceful as possible to ensure that the divorce has no long-term, damaging effects on your children.
Here are my top tips for keeping things as stress-free as possible for you and your children:
1. Stay Organised
You and your ex should both have a calendar in your homes specifically designed for your children. It should include who has your children and when, who collects or drops off and any events such as plays and sports games. Get your children involved with making the calendar and keep it positive with things like stickers and coloured pens.
Try to forget your feelings and hurt when you’re around your children. They don’t need to feel guilt or pain and you don’t want them to associate these feelings with time spent with you.
Consider sharing your activity plans with your ex so that you can both talk to your children about them before-hand and so that you can discuss any concerns that either of you may have.
If you can, try doing some activities together. Take it slow, perhaps a trip to the park or a visit to the local zoo. In future, your children will love celebrating their birthdays with both of you and if you can keep things peaceful for the sake of your children you’re guaranteed to have a much happier family life.
3. Don’t be late
Being on time will avoid pointless arguments with your ex-partner. If you drop your children off late your ex will feel that you’re not respecting their time with your children, the same way that you’d feel if your ex was late returning your children. It’s also important to ensure that when you spend time with your children they are your sole focus. Work can wait, make sure your children know how much you love them.
4. Phone Calls
Your children shouldn’t need permission to ring either of their parents to say goodnight or to tell them about their day. Make sure that your children can talk to their other parent whenever they want to. Telling them that it’s ok and that you’re happy with it will make your children feel more comfortable and confident with the new arrangement.
5. No Arguing
Think about your children. Will arguing make them happy? Of course not. Keep things light and positive around your children and if you need to discuss issues or express anger set up meetings or discuss your feelings with a mediator or divorce coach.
6. Promote Comfort
Comforting items will help your child to feel safe and in control during difficult situations. Taking a favourite teddy, blanket, book or film can help children to cope with homesickness.
Discuss our points with your ex and put them into action. Remember that your children and being the best parent that you can be are all that matters and by working together with your ex to keep your relationship as parents a happy one, everyone will benefit.
Take the process in your stride, it is all part of your Believe and Live Again recovery, bounce back and transition journey from being a “we” to becoming a “me”.
If you would like to have an informal chat about it, don't hesitate to get in touch on: +44 208 938 3672 and myself or a member of my team will gladly schedule a Complimentary Believe and Live Again Coaching Discovery session or a no-obligation 30 minute "Forgive and Let Go" consultation and together, we could be embarking upon the Believe and Live Again 5 R's journey to heal your heart, outgrow your challenges and let go of the past so that your glorious future can finally emerge.
Once again, I invite you to contact me or schedule a time to talk, call: +44 (0) 208 938 3672 (24 hours) or click on the pink "Contact" at the bottom right hand side of this page and this will take you into my "Let's Talk" contact form. Kindly complete the form and you will get a call back.
Best Wishes and God's Blessings