Nothing is easy about choosing to end your marriage. That process of moving forward with your life in a new direction can be even more challenging when children are involved. Divorced couples with children often want the best for their children, yet they often remain at odds with their ex-spouses. Financial struggles and lingering relationship battles sometimes cloud parents’ decisions with regards to post-divorce parenting.
Naturally, you want what’s best for your kids. That’s why understanding that your ex-spouse’s involvement in their lives is beneficial to their development. Simply accepting that you and your ex-spouse will be involved in co-parenting your children for many years to come is the first step at becoming a good post-divorce parent. Here are some other tips for recently divorced parents:
— Keep your thoughts about your ex-spouse to yourself. There is nothing to be gained by you discussing their other parent’s flaws. In fact, your ability to get along with your ex-spouse can provide a relationship model for your children that is good for their stability.
— Consistency is key. Remembering to pick up or drop off your kids according to pre-approved schedules not only reduces tension between you and your ex-spouse but also shows your kids the importance of being dependable and reliable.
— Remember to be fun and make your children laugh. You may feel as though your children are not receiving adequate discipline from your ex-spouse. Don’t fall into the trap of trying to compensate by becoming a tyrant. You can still be firm with your kids and still manage to enjoy the time you have with them.
— Be open with your kids about your divorce in a way that is appropriate for their age. It’s not necessary to go into all the gory details about why your marriage ended. What is more important is that you express to your children that you love them unconditionally and that they did not cause your decision to get divorced.
Of course, your ex-spouse may continue to behave poorly even if you observe good parenting strategies. Your Florida family law attorney can assist you with an ex-spouse who is committed to destroying your relationship with your children. Depending on the circumstances, you can obtain modifications to existing time-sharing agreements or get court intervention in extreme situations.
Source: The Huffington Post, “The 18 Best Things You Can Do For Your Kids After Divorce” Brittany Wong, Feb. 17, 2015