Divorce could adversely affect a child’s behavioral and emotional welfare. Out of everyone in your family, they could take the most brutal blow, lengthening their adjustment period to your new family situation.
During this challenging time, your role as a parent is to provide support and help them adjust to your new circumstances. Here are some research-based ways to could support your child:
- Children are prone to having negative thoughts as they cope with divorce. You could help balance their outlook by providing a more optimistic but realistic perspective. Your input could influence their train of thought and help them cope better.
- Minimize conflicts with your ex. Disputes between parents could cause significant stress to your child, so avoid exposing them to arguments. If you have any disagreements with your ex, discuss them separately in a civil manner.
- Keep a close relationship with your child and encourage them to bond with your ex. Having good relationships with both parents could help give them security and stability crucial to coping with overwhelming situations or emotions.
- Practice open communication with your child and your ex. Children might feel apprehensive about voicing out their emotions. Communicating openly helps motivate them to reach out whenever they need your help or support.
- Cooperate instead of competing with your ex. Your child could feel more fulfilled if both parents are actively involved in their life. Learning to compromise and work together could make a significant difference.
Divorce is not the end
Naturally, your child might see your divorce as a catastrophic event for your family. As a parent, you could help them understand the situation more realistically, allowing them to adjust during and after your divorce.