Much of my blog posts have been about the parents going through the divorce. There have been a few about how parents can get child support and some about not using the children as bait during a divorce. I read through this article and thought about the children themselves as their parents go through divorce. Often times, the children are overlooked in the divorce because their parents are dealing with a lot, they do not know how to talk to their children about divorce, or they just cannot function for themselves let alone their children. Most often it is not because the parents do not care, in fact, usually it is just the opposite the parents do care and wish they were not going through this because of the effect it will have on children.
This article hit on some great pointers, of which I will expand on a couple of them here, for what to do after a divorce with regard to your children.
First and foremost “do not make your child the messenger”… I cannot say how important this one is. Your children need to not feel as though they have to choose between parents. They should not be put in awkward positions of carrying messages between adults. They should be allowed to be kids and let the adults deal with adult matters. I do not care if your kid is 1 or 21. No matter what age, they are your kids.
Related to not making the child the messenger also comes not making them your counselor. As with above, they should not be made to feel as though they have to choose between you and your ex. By airing everything out with them, you may unintentionally be doing that.
As with everything your kids do, ask them about visits with your ex, but do not use them to learn about what is going on at your ex’s house. Your kids need to know you care about their time with your ex, but they also should not be made to feel like you are only asking to learn about your ex. They need to know you care about them and only them.