My ex-husband and I were together 6.5 years, got married on that anniversary and separated that same year. In the time we were together, we had two children, created a lifestyle and things weren’t perfect but I was content. I didn’t have to worry about a lot of things except his infidelities, which eventually had broken us apart. Our children, are affected immensely as their whole little lives, they knew him as daddy, me as mommy and that was it. So when daddy moved out, and mommy moved on, they weren’t happy. Let’s just say its been two years and while they like my current, they remind me “I miss when daddy was here”.
During divorce, we don’t pay attention to the children’s feelings. At least I didn’t, I was too caught up in my feelings to even realize my children were hurting too. No matter how much access to dad they have, it’s still not what they are used to, so I got stuck wondering, how do I move on? How do I make sure there’s more of him for them? We eventually broke down to – summers with dad, and I’d rotate weekends. The other months, kids are with me and dad rotates weekends. Parenting after divorce is hard but it’s not the end of the world. You also have to pay attention to your children, see how they are feeling. Even have them see a therapist if they need to. I’d like to share some things that I tried to do to make the transition easier I’d like to share because it may help you too:
- Don’t Bash The Absent Parent
- Seriously!! It’ll do one of two things – make your child hate you, or their other parent. Allow these babies to create their own perception. It’s your job to be there to support them.
- Don’t interfere with visits
- If the child wants to see the absent parent, let them. If the child doesn’t, don’t. It’s simple. I personally let my children decide. If its dads weekend, ‘hey guys want to go to dads house?’ if they say no, they don’t go. The child’s relationship with the absent parent has nothing to do with you. Motivate and support it. That’s it.. Even if you are getting shaded.
- Don’t discuss Adult business with Children
- I can’t tell you how many time’s I’ve been around friends with their kids and the conversations were adult based with children present. NO!! SEND THEY LITTLE ASSES UPSTAIRS OR OUTSIDE. Simple. One of the reason these kids are so grown now is because they sit around listening in on grown folks talk! CUT IT OUT!
- Don’t split Birthdays/Holidays
- Find common ground. If the absent parent has a new partner, understand that partner is now apart of your child’s village and for your child, y’all have to get along. Tearing a child to decide who they’d like to spend these days with is not fair at all. No two birthdays, Christmas’ and stuff like that. Co-parent for the sake of your child. Now I understand it’s not that easy, but it is doable.
- Encourage the child express their feelings
- If they are sad and hurting that’s important and you need to know. Not to try and make up with the other parent but so that y’all can come together to figure out a better way that makes the child happy.
Co-parenting is not hard. For me, my ex-husband and I only speak in regards to our children. We get along for the sake of our child. We are parents, we are not friends and that’s fine. But my children seeing a healthy relationship between their parents, is everything to me. 1. because I didn’t have a dad and 2. Because even though I couldn’t keep the family life I wanted for them, they still have two parents who love and take care of them and that is why I sleep well at night.
That’s all I have for you today. Until Next time!