Transitioning to life after divorce can be a lot to take in as an adult. And even if you and your ex have kept your plans and the legal settlement civil, your children may still feel stress or uneasiness about it.
Instead of trying to pretend like the divorce is no big deal, you should both involve and comfort your children through the adjustment process. You can do this by keeping your children up-to-date with divorce plan and being in tune with you and your children’s emotions.
Keep your kids in the loop
You shouldn’t pile on your plans to separate from your spouse the second you decide to do so, but you also shouldn’t wait until your spouse moves out of the house to tell your children about your divorce. Instead, once you have a grip on the situation and how your children will split their time between each home, you sand your ex should conduct well-thought-out conversation with your children.
It’s important to let your children know that the fact that you’ve grown apart from your spouse is not their fault. Depending on the age and personality types of your children, they will react in different ways. As such, you should continue to see how they feel as you begin to roll out the new custody schedule.
Create consistent routines
No matter what route you choose to raise your children after divorce — co-parenting, parallel parenting or even nesting — creating common goals, routines and rules for your children can go a long way. As your child is going through all the emotions that come along with adapting to change, any sense of consistency can provide comfort.
Naturally, if there are two households there will be some different approaches to things like bedtime or homework routines. But if you take issue with ex-spouse’s parenting style or think there is a gap in communication, then you should voice your concerns kindly between one another. Putting your child between co-parent conflict isn’t fair to them and can cause even more stress during a difficult time.
Get the help you need
One of the best ways to help your children stay afloat when the going gets tough, is to keep your own head above water. You can do this by seeking out divorce support groups or one-on-one therapy.