What 10 Things Divorced Parent Should Do To Promote Positive Child Adjustment?
The effects of recent enlargement in divorce rates are negative effects. Divorced children are more probably to get pregnant as teenagers, drop out of high school, abuse drugs and have aggressively emotional and behavioral problems, which lead to social problems. Some children decide to go out of their home when their parents separate each other, and subsequently they become homeless children. They do not have good opportunities to find a job due to shortage of education. Consequently, crime may likely be the end result.
As parent, one of your top priorities is to reduce this negative effect and help your children have positive divorce adjustment. Here are the 10 things you should do to promote positive divorce child adjustment.
1. Do encourage your children to talk about how they feel.
The sure way to help your children adjust to divorce is for you to know what they feel. So let your children know that they can openly talk to you about their feelings of your separation or divorce. Keep lines of communication open and answer all questions about the changes. Make sure your children feels like they can ask you questions and get answers about why the divorce happened and what to expect.
2. Reassure children that everything will be ok but just different.
Children are invariably frightened and confused by divorce. Provide extra hugs and kisses and tell your child that you and other adults will always be near to love and protect.
3. Do stay involve in your children's life.
Custodial and non-custodial parent should stay involve in their children's life. Children may interpret lack of involvement as rejection. Often, they think the parent who is not involved in their life loves them less. If your children are to adjust well to your divorce, nurturing the parent-child relationship is paramount. Spend special time with your children, have fun together and continually express your love for your children.
4. Do keep your ex-spouse from becoming an ex-parent.
Many non-custodial parents, who typically are fathers, fail to stay involved with their children after the divorce. This is unfortunate as children's adjustment is enhanced by a positive, active relationship with both parents.
If you are the custodial parent, you should encourage the involvement of the non-custodial parent even though it takes extra effort if a lot of anger is still present. It is a time when you must separate your spousal relationship from your parenting relationship. This is hard, but it is possible. You must try not to "direct" your spouse's parenting patterns and concentrate your efforts on smoothing access.
5. Do not argue with your ex-spouse in front of your child.
Children exposed to conflict are more likely to have behavioral and emotional disturbances, suffer social and interpersonal problems, and show impairment in their thought and reasoning processes. Experts say the amount of conflict the child witnesses during and immediately after divorce is a crucial factor in his or her adjustment.
When parents show better emotional adjustment after the divorce, so do the children. Children show much less anxiety, insecurity and distress when parents are able to argue in a proper manner, reach an agreement, and stick to the compromise.
6. Do keep routines consistent as much as possible.
Children thrive on consistency and stability. During the transition you need to demonstrate to the child that their life will not change dramatically. Having consistent routines (having generally the same naptimes, mealtimes, bedtimes and bath-times each day) is important for young children, because it helps them to feel secure. At times, some parenting issues require communication and coordination between parents, if the child spends time with both parents. Both parents don't have to do things exactly the same way, but it is easier for children if most things are similar at each home.
7. Do make every effort to ease the transition of your children from one home to the other.
Transition between homes can be stressful for children as well as adults. Initial adjustment to new situations can cause tension, and children may experience grief and loss over their parent separation for some time.
Children can have difficulty thinking about leaving their custodial parent and their primary home even for the weekend. And if you are the non-custodial parent, when your children get adjusted to being at your home, it may be difficult for them to think about leaving you again, even though they're glad to see their custodial parent.
You can make transition easier for your children by allowing children to make choices about what toys, clothes, collections, etc., are kept in each home, establishing regular schedules, and be flexible enough to accommodate schedule changes.
8. Do keep children familial ties.
Children benefit from keeping the familial ties in their life that were meaningful and important to them prior to the divorce. Such familial ties may not be limited to parents but may also include extended family, such as grandparents.
9. Develop a parenting plan.
Planning how to care for children after separation can be a confusing and difficult task. This is the reason that made parenting plan so important. Having a plan can make it easier for you and your ex-spouse to work together as parents and reduce the amount of conflict between you. One way to help your children adjust to divorce become an effective parent is to have a plan, so create one for your child.
10. Do create a generally supportive and cooperative in-between parent relationship.
Children benefit to the greatest when the in-between parent relationship is generally supportive and cooperative. Though most parents know this, they find it hard to set aside their anger and resentment toward the other parent making co-parenting hardly possible. Try to remedy this situation by getting my free ebook on cooperative parenting and divorce. Visit my website and get your free "8 Essential Steps to Cooperative Parenting and Divorce" ebook.
Copyright by Ruben Francia. All Rights Reserved.
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This article was posted on January 03, 2005
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