When two parents break up, it can be heartbreaking for everybody involved. Although you will understandably be devastated, you must think of your children. They don’t fully understand what is happening and their emotions can feel so much more intense than ours. Unless you carefully help them through this, your break up could affect them in ways you never thought possible. Here’s how to make sure they’re not affected:
Be Honest With Them
The first step is to talk with your children and be honest with them. Exactly how honest you are will depend on their ages – you may need to explain to them separately so they understand better. It’s important they know that just because you are not together anymore, doesn’t mean you love them any less. You both still love them and will be there for them.
Don’t Place the Blame
Whatever you do, never place the blame in front of your kids. You might not think that they understand, but they pick up more than you realise. Blaming one another and bad mouthing one another will only affect them. Try to get on for the sake of your children even if you absolutely hate your ex’s guts.
Communicate With Them
Communication shouldn’t stop with your children once you’ve talked with them about why it ended. It should be an ongoing thing; their whole lives will have changed and they have some readjusting to do too. Make sure they know that they can speak to you about anything. Ask you any questions. Some of their fears and questions might seem silly to you, but don’t tell them ‘stop being silly’. Tell them you understand and help them overcome those fears the best you can.
Make Sure They See Both Parents
Kids need both parents in their lives. Unless your ex is a crazy psychopath, your kids will need to see them. A family law lawyer can help you hash out the details so that you have an arrangement suited to everybody. Stick to promises and agreements as much as you can. Breaking promises will not be good for your children’s self esteem!
Don’t Get A Replacement Straight Away
You will be lonely after you’ve broken up with your partner; everybody is. But you should not, under any circumstances, get a replacement straight away. Take time to improve yourself. Be happy on your own. Take some classes, develop new skills. Only then can you consider getting back on the dating scene. Make sure youwith your kids too!
Even once you’ve found somebody you get on with, don’t introduce them to your children right away. This is confusing for them. Introducing your children to your new partner is for a whole different blog post!
Your children might still face some struggles after the break up. They won’t be used to not having the other parent in their life as much. They might feel as if the break up was their fault. It’s up to you and the other parent to communicate with them and show them that they are loved no matter what.