When it comes to divorce, kids tend to experience a host of negative effects that can lead to academic suffering, a serious chance of being incarcerated at some point, and even indulgence in drugs and alcohol. But if you take steps to address the emotions that your child experiences as you go through a divorce, you'll find that they are less likely to focus on the negative aspects of the situation and instead they will be encouraged to work on finding ways to manage their emotions in a productive way. Here's how you can help ease the effects of divorce on your little ones:
Invest in Therapy
An effective way to ensure that your child's emotions are well guided is to invest time and money in therapy sessions. A great option is play therapy, which gives children the opportunity to express their feelings through artwork, sand play, and toy interactions. Children get to lead play sessions at their own pace and are never pushed to reveal anything they aren't ready to deal with.
The therapist simply observes and then uses the information they gather to work with their young patient to find constructive ways of expressing and processing their true feelings. Family therapy like Living Hope Clinic that enables you and your child to work together when it comes to dealing with emotions and problems is also an effective option, especially if you prefer to maintain some form of control over what happens in each therapy session your child participates in.
Keep Communication Open
It's also important to keep communication lines wide open between you and your little one. Make sure that your own emotions are always in check before having serious discussion so that you can tackle even the harshest of topics with dignity and in a fair frame of mind. Sit down and make a list of the questions you think your child may ask and take some time to thoughtfully write out answers to each one of them.
You can use this brainstorming to ensure that each topic your child brings up is answered honestly and without jumping the gun so they feel comfortable coming to you no matter what may be on their mind.
Maintain a Regular Schedule
One of the most important things you can do at home to help your child maintain some normalcy within their life is to maintain a regular schedule full of the same after school activities, community functions, and playdates at friends' houses that they have been used to. If you find that your personal schedule has changed due to circumstances revolving around your divorce, find a friend or relative – or hire a babysitter if possible – to transport your child to their functions when necessary. This will provide your little one with some peace of mind in knowing that their whole world isn't falling apart just because mom and dad will no longer be living together.
For the best results, combine these techniques with one another during the months after your divorce. Each method is sure to help you and your child bond throughout the experience so you can learn how to effectively support one another not only now, but for many years to come.