Parenting After Divorce
Separation and divorce may be a very upsetting, stressful, and difficult time for children. However, there are strategies to assist your children in coping with the distress and impact of divorce.
Children and Divorce
During a separation or divorce, everyone involved, including extended family, is likely to feel stressed and emotional. Often children feel as if their entire world has been flipped upside down. They may be shocked, unsure, or angered. Some children may even feel guilty, blaming themselves for what has happened. Divorce is never a painless process, but by prioritising your children’s well-being, you may significantly decrease their distress and help them understand.
How to Discuss Divorce with Children
Most parents feel anxious when it comes to having to tell their children about their divorce. Prepare what you’re going to say before you sit down to chat to make the conversation a bit easier for yourself and your children.
- Try to create an empathic manner and address the most crucial things straight away.
- Be clear and concise. Your children have the right to know why you are divorcing, but extensive explanations may confuse them.
- Give your children assurance that your love for them hasn’t changed.
- Anticipate your children’s queries about life changes by stating that some things will change, but others will not.
- Avoid assigning blame. This will not help your child when they may be feeling distressed.
Providing support to your child during a divorce
As your children learn to cope with new situations, your patience, reassurance, and listening ear can help them feel less stressed. By creating structure and routine for your children, you are reminding them that they can rely on you for stability, structure, and care.
Encourage your child to grieve the separation.
Parental divorce can feel like a traumatic loss for children—the loss of a parent, the broken family unit, or just the life they knew. By encouraging your children in expressing their feelings during the divorce process, you may assist them in grieving their loss and adjusting to new circumstances.
Make it clear to children that they are not to blame
Many children’s reactions to divorce is that they played a role in the parental separation. They recall instances when they fought with their parents, attained low grades in school, or were in trouble.
- Clarify your reasons for seeking a divorce. Hearing the underlying reason for your decision in child- appropriate terms can be beneficial.
- Be patient. One day, a child may appear to “understand it,” but they may be hesitant the next.
- Reassure. Remind your children as frequently as you need to that both parents love them and are not to blame for the divorce.
Maintaining stability after the Divorce
While it is beneficial for children to learn to adapt, consistency and organisation is required in your children’s everyday life tol help them adjust to change.
Establishing regular routines in each family and continuously conveying what to expect to your children can provide them with a sense of peace and security.
Children of Divorce
Your child can thrive in all areas of their life with successful co-parenting from 2 single parents even when the family structure changes.
The effects on children can be reduced by spending quality time with your child when they are in your new family life. Providing that feeling of love and support in their daily lives will reduce any potential negative outcomes of the effects of divorce.
Look For Support
Feel free to contact me, Anne Creswell, if you feel like you need extra guidance and support in helping your children through the divorce. We can customise a plan to suit your family’s circumstances.
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Public Health Nurse
Health Visiting (SCHPHN)