Help Kids Cope with Divorce
Navigating the holidays as a newly divorced family can be stressful for the parents as well as the kids.
The holidays can be a difficult time for children whose parents are divorced. They may feel sad, angry, or lonely, and may miss the traditions and routines that they had when their parents were together. As a parent, it's important to be aware of the emotions your child may be experiencing and to provide support and understanding.
If this is your family this season, here are a few tips and strategies for helping your child cope and heal during the holidays.
Maintain as much consistency as possible. One way to help your child cope during the holidays is to maintain as much consistency as possible. This may mean continuing to celebrate the same traditions and routines that your child is used to, or creating new ones that incorporate elements from both parents' holiday traditions. By providing a sense of stability and familiarity, you can help your child feel more comfortable and secure during this difficult time.
At the holidays, school schedules change, as do co-parenting schedules. Keeping your kids informed using a visual co-parenting calendar will help them emotionally prepare and feel less stressed.
Communicate openly and honestly with your child. Another important tip is to communicate openly and honestly with your child about their feelings. Encourage your child to express their emotions, and let them know that it's okay to feel sad, angry, or lonely. Provide support and understanding, and let your child know that you are there to listen and to help. By being open and honest, you can help your child feel more connected and supported during the holidays.
Minimize conflict and promote cooperation. During the holidays, it's important to minimize conflict and promote cooperation between you and your ex-partner. This may mean compromising on certain aspects of the holiday celebration, or finding creative solutions to potential problems. For example, if you and your ex-partner cannot agree on how to divide the holiday, you may consider alternating holidays each year or finding a new holiday tradition that both parents can participate in. By minimizing conflict and promoting cooperation, you can create a more positive and supportive environment for your child. This is definitely easier said than done (take it from someone who has been there!) but it's so important for your kids that you put your own anger aside.
Overall, it's important for parents to be aware of the emotions that their children may be experiencing during the holidays, and to provide support and understanding. By maintaining consistency, minimizing conflict, and promoting cooperation, parents can help their children cope and heal during this difficult time.