Tips for Divorcing Parents

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TIPS FOR DIVORCING PARENTS

1) Do not talk negatively about your former spouse—remember your former spouse is still your child’s “mom” or “dad”. The negative criticism can hurt your child’s self esteem.

2) Do not use your child as messengers between you and your former spouse. You do not want your child to be aware of the battles that occur between you and your former spouse. Don’t use your child as a spy when they are with the other parent.

3) Tell your child you and your former spouse love them.

4) Reassure your child that the divorce is not their fault.

5) Encourage your child to see your former spouse frequently and be accommodating in making sure that your child spends time with your former spouse. Don’t make your child feel bad when they enjoy their time with the other parent. Don’t interrupt your child’s time with the other parent by calling too much or by planning activities during their time together.

6) Remember that you are watching out for your child’s best interest and act accordingly.

7) Do not allow your child to be your caretaker—let your kids be kids.

8) Develop a support system through your friends, family and counselors.

9) Do not abuse drugs or alcohol during this difficult time..it impairs your ability to reassure your child..it also keeps you from paying attention to their needs.

10) If you are ordered to pay child support—DO IT!! The loss of income facing your child can affect their daily lives and activities.

11) If you are supposed to be receiving child support and your former spouse is not paying it timely—DO NOT LET YOUR CHILD KNOW!! By telling your children you are feeding their insecurity and sense of abandonment.

12) If possible, do not uproot your child—stability is very important and their friends help buffer them from the trauma of their parents’ divorce.