Helping Your Child Adjust To Post-Divorce Life
Making significant changes in a child’s life, regardless of the situation can be difficult, as children often lack the maturity and understanding to fully grasp the nature of the change. Helping a child adapt to these changes can be particularly difficult, however, when two parents are divorced. For instance, even when two parents share custody equally, their child will still need to adapt to not seeing both parents every day and to living in two residences. In these cases, it is important that both co-parents work together to assist their child in navigating any of the challenges that may come with making the transition to post-divorce life.
Communicate with Your Child About the Change in Arrangements
One of the most important things that a parent can do when implementing a change in a parenting plan is to communicate with his or her child honestly and with compassion. It can be difficult for a child to comprehend a new schedule, especially when it is very different from the current one, so parents should be sure to give age-appropriate explanations for the reason for the change. Listening to your child’s feelings, providing guidance, and creating an open dialogue can go a long way towards helping a child feel safe while they adjust to their new schedule.
Allow Your Child to Express His or Her Feelings
Open communication is a two way street, so it’s important for parents to give their children the chance to express their feelings. Adjusting to post-divorce life is an ongoing process for a family and it’s not unusual for a child to express feelings of anger, anxiety, or depression while they adjust to their new normal. Be sure to invite them to talk honestly about their difficulties and if possible, empathize with them about your own experiences of transition.
Maintain Consistency When Possible
While a child’s day-to-day life will undoubtedly change when two parents divorce, keeping as consistent of a routine as possible can help provide a sense of stability. If, for instance, a child usually does homework at a certain time, attends soccer practice on specific days, or adheres to a particular bedtime routine, parents can continue with those activities. While both parents may not be able to be present for every activity, having a semblance of a consistent daily routine can help the child feel secure while also sticking to the overall goal of adjustment to post-divorce life.
The Legal Representation Your Family Deserves
Navigating the changes that accompany divorce can be difficult for families. It is, however, possible to do so, especially for those who have a solid, clear-cut, and detailed parenting plan in place that is in their child’s best interests. For help finding a solution to your own family law matter that is best for your family, please call experienced Florida child visitation and time-sharing lawyer Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. at 954-945-7591 today. You can also set up a free consultation by reaching out to our legal team via online message.