If you’ve read my Throwback Thursday posts, you know that divorce has been around a long time. But when it is your divorce and your children, it really doesn’t matter how many other people have been through the same situation; you just want to know that your children are going to be okay. So how do you make sure your kids feel safe and unconditionally loved during your divorce? Laura Lifshitz wrote an insightful article this month on PopSugar titled 5 Things All Children of Divorce Want addressing this very important topic. Lifshutz, a single parent, combines her real-life experience with tips that can help almost all single parents deal with helping children during this transition period.
I think long and hard all too often about how I can make life work for my daughter and myself, thinking about how I can make her life happy without that nuclear family I thought she would be living in. The fact is divorce does not mean children will be miserable. In fact, living in two peaceful homes beats living in a miserable home, hands down.
Laura goes on to explain that your child wants peace and harmony without being surrounded by arguing adults. They may dream of their mommy and daddy getting back together but you now have the opportunity to keep them away from the terrible situation or person and provide them with a new, healthier normal.
Clarity on a possession schedule and/or their living situation is also very important for children of divorce. Structure in their life is something they want and need. Now there is no guarantee they are going to be happy with what you and your ex have decided to do, but at least have a clear understanding of what the plan is.
The third point Laura makes is that even if you hate your ex and the feeling is very mutual, please do not vent those feelings in front of your children. The last thing you want to do is to make them feel like they are caught in the middle of your ongoing war. Try to make this situation easier for them.
Dealing with a deadbeat parent can be incredibly frustrating for you and heartbreaking for your child. If you are in the fortunate situation to have an ex who wants to actively co-parent, try to find a way to tweak schedules and allow your spouse extra time, even if it’s for dinner or a random weekend day.
The last point Laura says children of divorce want is the freedom to love and to be loved. That means to freely love you and your ex without feeling guilt or anger. Equally as important is for your child to feel loved back by both of you. They deserve the simplicity of this. She states, “There is more than enough room in a child’s heart to love you and your former spouse, easily.” True words to take to heart.
If you are going through a divorce or custody case and are need help, I can be reached by phone at 214-526-5234 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Verner Brumley‘s principal office is located in Dallas, Texas.