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      Ten Helpful Tips for Divorced Families

       

      1. Never disparage your former spouse in front of your children. Children are aware that they are ”made up” of both of their parent’s traits. The negative criticism can harm a child’s self- esteem.
      2. Do not use your child as a messenger between you and your former spouse.
      3. Reassure your children that they are loved and that the divorce is not their fault. Many children will assume they are to blame for their parents’ hostility.
      4. Encourage your children to enjoy their time with your former spouse. Do everything within your power to accommodate a great visit.
      5. At every step during the divorce, remind yourself that your children’s interests, not yours, are paramount, and act accordingly. Lavish them with love at each opportunity.
      6. Your children may be tempted to act as a caretaker. Resist the temptation to let them. Let your peers, adult family members, and mental health professionals be your counselors. Although it is great to teach children to be responsible and help out; we need to remember to let children be children.
      7. If you have an addiction, get counseling immediately. Any impairment inhibits your ability to reassure your children and give them the attention they need at this difficult time.
      8. If you have to pay child support, pay it on time. The loss of income facing many children after divorce puts them at a financial disadvantage.
      9. If you are the parent who is supposed to receive child support and are not, do not tell you children. It feeds into their sense of abandonment and further erodes their stability.
      10. Try to keep stability in the life of your children. Stability in residence and school helps to buffer children.

          

       

Last Modified on June 2, 2008
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