Some tips for making it a little bit easier for kids
Divorce is usually a terrible time for everyone. Sometimes, however, those who get it the worst are the smallest members of the family – the kids. They're either too small to understand why mom and dad are not going to live together, or old enough to show a rebellious nature as an act of defiance in the face of the only world they knew coming apart.
In both cases, the divorcing parents need to show the kids that their love will never leave them, or at least that it isn't their fault. Here are a few tips on how to help them cope with this traumatic event…even while you're trying to do the same.
Recognize any changes in your children's feelings More likely than not, your kids are going to go through some tough times dealing with your divorce. It's best to help your kids understand those feelings as soon as possible before the behavior spills out into their school or the general public. It can make a messier time even more so. Sitting down and having a talk is the best medicine for this.
Stick to your routines There has been enough upheaval in your home. Now is not the time to change the chore chart or the amount of time your kids can access the internet. Alternately, this isn't a time to feel guilty and give your kids even more time on the 'net, or whatever reward you give for good behavior. It's a time to keep on keepin' on.
Create a safe personal space for each child at each home As parents know, children are very big on things that make them feel safe (of course, the same could be said about adults). Find a spot in the house the child enjoys and make sure it's filled with things they can do while on their own. Giving them that place of safety in a chaotic household can be very empowering.
Make time for quality time with each parent Now is the best time for both parents to be heavily involved in their child's day-to-day routine. This will also help avoid a nasty situation where a child could prefer one parent over the other in the long haul.
Avoid angry, divorce talk in front of the kids We understand that it's a trying time for you. However, going on a fifteen-minute rant in front of your kids about your soon-to-be-ex is nothing but counter-productive. Let's let cooler heads prevail and family time last a little bit longer.