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5 Ways to Make Your Divorce Less Stressful for Your Kids
If you are stressed while going through your divorce, consider how much more your kids might be. After all, they don’t have the maturity to understand everything that is happening, and their world is being turned upside down. Although you cannot remove all the stress of the situation, you can help your child be more confident and alleviate some of their anxiety.
Your children need reassurance. Sometimes, one of the best things you can do is to simply remind your child that none of this is their fault. Keep your promises so that your child knows that you can still be trusted. In other words, don’t make promises out of guilt that you cannot keep. Try to maintain their routine to the best extent that you can, which is another reassurance to your child.
Another way to be reassuring is to let your child express their feelings. Let them know that their emotions are valid. Read books with your kids that demonstrate there are healthy families who have gone through the same situation. Find characters that they can relate to and who handle the situation well in the end.
Listen to your children and answer their questions. However, you will also need to temper your answers with wisdom about their maturity level and need to know. Provide reasonable answers, but be cautious about giving them too much information. Don’t make your child your confidant or spy, to get information about the other parent.
Don’t argue in front of the kids. You also want to be careful about talking in general about the divorce while your kids are listening. Save your complaints for your best friend, lawyer, or therapist. Try very hard not to criticize your ex-spouse in front of the child. Don’t make your child take sides. They need to know that both parents are still their parents.
Seek professional help when your child isn’t processing their feelings well. As an adult, it can hard to express your feelings of anger or fear, and it’s much more so for children who don’t have experience. Acting out is not necessarily misbehaving, as much as it is a cry for help. A counselor can help them find more constructive ways to express their feelings.
Take care of yourself. Keep your own sanity while you’re going through the divorce so that you are more effective when dealing with your child’s pain. Get a counselor, enjoy a massage, or meet with your spiritual leader for stress relief. It’s important that you maintain your own mental wellbeing so that you can be there for your kids. To learn more, contact a divorce lawyer in Pacific Grove.
Paul advises people on divorce and family law matters. You can find his thoughts at Weebly blog.
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