Would you have gotten married if you knew that one day you would be divorcing your spouse? It’s safe to say your answer to this question is probably a big “no.” Divorce is an experience that no person in Minnesota seeks to endure, and it’s also something you likely never expected to happen. As difficult as divorce is for spouses, it’s even more challenging when children are involved.
For children, a parental divorce can throw their world into chaos. To them, it’s a big loss and an event that tears their family apart, redefining everything they knew as “normal.” As a parent, it is imperative that you do all you can to support your kids and help them through this stressful transition. Here are a few ways that parents can help their children navigate complex emotions and adjust to their new circumstances amid divorce.
Allow them to grieve
Your children will likely feel an intense loss when you divorce since they’re losing the family unit and the life they knew. It is important to not only allow them time to grieve, but also help them through the complicated emotions they’re likely experiencing. Encourage your children to share their feelings and to be honest. It is important that you acknowledge their emotions and show that it is safe for them to open up to you.
It’s not their fault
When parents divorce, it is common for children to think that they played a role in the separation. As a parent, you need to reassure the children that they were not responsible for the divorce and that it was solely between you and your spouse. Your kids may often need a reminder that none of this was their fault. Let them know that you love them and always will.
Establish new routines
Children thrive under structure and stability. You can help provide structure by establishing new routines in their daily lives. Work together with the other parent to create regular routines at both households, and communicate to your kids what they should expect. Knowing what to expect will provide stability for your children and allow them to feel a sense of safety and calmness.
Cooperate and put the children first
It can be damaging for your children to witness conflict or, worse, be in the middle of arguments between you and the other parent. As difficult as it may seem, it is important to seek cooperation instead of conflict with your former spouse. Your children deserve to feel loved and supported during this difficult time, so always put their well-being as the top priority and things will fall into place. Divorce is tough and things may not go as smoothly as you think, so ensuring the protection of your rights is always beneficial.