DEALING WITH GRIEF 29 Divorce And Children cont’d


Clearing up misunderstandings

Many kids believe that they had something to do with the divorce; recalling times they argued with their parents, received poor grades, or got in trouble. You can help your kids let go of this misconception.

🌺Set the record straight. Repeat why you decided to get a divorce. Sometimes hearing the real reason for your decision can help.

🌺Be patient. Kids may seem to “get it” one day and be unsure the next. Treat your child’s confusion or misunderstandings with patience.

🌺Reassure. As often as you need to, remind your children that both parents will continue to love them and that they are not responsible for the divorce.

Give reassurance and love

Children have a remarkable ability to heal when given the support and love they need. Your words, actions, and ability to remain consistent are all important tools to reassure your children of your unchanging love.

🌷Both parents will be there. Let your kids know that even though the physical circumstances of the family unit will change, they can continue to have healthy, loving relationships with both of their parents.

🌷It’ll be okay. Tell kids that things won’t always be easy, but that they will work out. Knowing it’ll be all right can provide incentive for your kids to give a new situation a chance.

🌷Closeness. Physical closeness—in the form of hugs, pats on the shoulder, or simple proximity — has a powerful way of reassuring your child of your love.

🌷Be honest. When kids raise concerns or anxieties, respond truthfully. If you don’t know the answer, say gently that you aren’t sure right now, but you’ll find out and it will be okay.

Helping children cope with divorce … provide stability and structure.

⭐️While it’s good for kids to learn to be flexible, adjusting to many new things at once can be very difficult. Help your kids adjust to change by providing as much stability and structure as possible in their daily lives.

⭐️Remember that establishing structure and continuity doesn’t mean that you need rigid schedules or that mom and dad’s routines need to be exactly the same. But creating some regular routines at each household and consistently communicating to your children what to expect will provide your kids with a sense of calm and stability.

The comfort of routines

💫The benefit of schedules and organization for younger children is widely recognized, but many people don’t realize that older children appreciate routine, as well. Kids feel safer and more secure when they know what to expect next. Knowing that, even when they switch homes, dinnertime is followed by a bath and then homework, for example, can set a child’s mind at ease.

💫Maintaining routine also means continuing to observe rules, rewards, and discipline with your children. Resist the temptation to spoil kids during a divorce by not enforcing limits or allowing them to break rules.

✅The first safety instruction for an airplane emergency is to put the oxygen mask on yourself before you put it on your child. The take-home message: take care of yourself so that you can be there for your kids.

Credits – Amanda Buys

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