You still have your kids, and they’re counting on you to be strong. Here are a few tips to make the adjustment easy for your children as well.
Keep changes to a minimum.
Try not to disrupt your child’s routine: his mealtime, playtime, bedtime, study time, and other important activities. The same goes for discipline — rules should always be consistent. A sense of security and stability is essential in raising a well-grounded child.
Sugarcoating things only leads to anxiety and distrust. Kids are capable of understanding the situation and would eventually adjust to changes if parent explain the issues in words they could understand. Tech your child to expect and counter possible snide remarks from other. Honesty and trust make for a solid relationship.
Dump the negativity.
It makes things worse when a parent demeans the other in front of their child. Settle visitation schedules and financial support and agree on child discipline in amicable terms. Positive and transparent communication is key. Try to include the child in these discussions if he is old enough too understand what’s going on.
Build a support system.
Surround yourself with people you can talk to when you feel overwhelmed. Don’t take the you-and-me-against-the-world stance; isolation only makes things tougher. Have significant and dependable people in your child’s life — from extended family members and friends, to schoolteachers or after-school program instructors. They can also be helpful influences and role models for your child.
Let children be children.
Give your child time to be with his friends, play, and do his homework. Make him feel he has a responsible parent who attends to his needs — someone he can count on to help him with schoolwork, read a bedtime story with, or cheer for him during a soccer game. You could be emotionally upset at times, but always remember that you are the parent, so you must take charge of the situation.
Spend time together.
Set aside quality time with your child. Always find time to do relaxing activities together. Enjoy even simple pleasures together like a Sunday picnic, a painting project, or a movie date at home. It helps keep the worries away and assures your child that everything will be okay.
Set aside time for yourself.
A simple spa appointment or a lunch date with friends goes a long way. It’s vital for single parents to keep a decent social life. Relax and recharge, or simply get enough sleep. A healthy and happy you means a stronger and more capable parent to your child.