Children struggle with divorce just as much as adults do – maybe more. Regardless of their ages or the stage of divorce you are in, here are eight ways you can help your kids deal with this difficult process.
- Remain civil with your ex-spouse, even when the children aren’t present.
- Keep in mind that a bad spouse can be a good parent.
- Don’t just avoid bad-mouthing the other parent. Find something about them to praise to your children. Even if you’re digging so deep it hurts.
- Make sure the children’s transitions between households are as as smooth as possible. Help them pack and remember to bring home specific items.
- Even if you can’t exercise control over the other parent’s household, you can offer consistency in your own home environment.
- Reserve judgment of new or unfamiliar situations until all the facts are in.
- Don’t ask your kids to spy or to keep secrets.
- Make every effort to “co-parent.” Put aside your differences and cooperate as a team.
If I were to boil down these suggestions into one piece of advice, it would be this: Show respect to the other parent. Plain and simple.
Remember: we chose not only to marry this person, but also to have children with them. Those choices may not have been the best choices, but we made them – and our children must live with those choices every day.