How to Deal with Divorced Parents

How to Deal with Divorced Parents

As a child of divorcing parents, you will experience a whole world of new emotions, uncertainty even and major changes in all aspects of your life. 

If your parents divorce on a bitter note, you may have to deal with heated arguments and conflicts between them too. 

In a situation like this, if you feel like you need to reach out for help or support, you must not hesitate from doing so. 

It will help you transition more easily.

When all is said and done, you will realize how your world will right itself and things will feel better in the long-term. 

Here are some tips that can help you cope with divorced parents better:


1. Don't Hold Your Emotions Back

First and foremost, the most important thing is to bring out whatever you're feeling about the divorce of your parents. 

No matter what you're feeling, whether resentment, disappointment or even anger, you must not hold it within. Far from suppressing it, try to let it out. If possible vent out your inner feelings with whoever is the closest to you, even your parents.

Secondly, often children end up feeling guilty or responsible for their parent's divorce. You must not at any time believe that you are the cause of the split. When marriages reach a dead end and couples can no longer find it possible to live together, divorce is the best way to end things before messing up each other's life.

You must never be a part of the conflict, issues or challenges that are causing your parents to split. Let them take this decision and even when arguments break out, it is best that you refrain from participating in it. 


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2. Do Not Initiate Conflicts but Try to Initiate Peace

Remember how we said divorces need not be ugly? 

Yes, there is a very civil and peaceful way of going about it. If your parents find it difficult to be rational during the course of the divorce, you must try and maintain peace.

Try to explain to each one of your parents to stop bickering, call a truce even if divorcing, and generally stop being unkind. 

It would make the ordeal less difficult for each party. 


3. Treat Each Parent Fairly

If at any time you feel a parent is trying to get you to take their sides, you must gently explain how unfair it is to embroil you in their mess. 

You should convince each parent how you have the right to have the freedom to hang out with each parent when and how you please, while the other must not act jealous, offended or mistreated.

As a child, you have equal right to each parent and you deserve to spend equal time with both and how it would be unfair to you if one of them made you feel disloyal for talking to the other. It is also unfair for any parent to make you feel as if the burden of their happiness lies squarely on your shoulders. 


4. Have a Table Talk

Not very matter needs to be settled in the courts. You must convince your parents to sit down as a family at the table, before the divorce proceedings are complete to finalize other important details. 

These include when which parent is going to be there for you, which days which parent will be spending with you, who is going to drive you to soccer games during the weekend and other such details.

If both parents express a willingness to be present at all your important events, make them agree mutually that they will behave politely and courteously with each other, no matter what. 

Also, make them decide how they would want to alternate their time with you. 

Your dad might want to take you for vacation during the year but so might your mom. 

Hence, it is best for both to decide beforehand which time would suit whom to avoid clashes later on. 


5. Reach Out for Support

No matter how strong you are and how well you prepare, your parents' divorce will certainly affect you. 

You must not contain yourself for reaching out for support to any other close relative, friend or even your sibling.

You must remember the loved ones who will be there to support you during this difficult phase and if they're offering support, don't be afraid to lean on them. 

Let their companionship and presence be your anchor till the tough time has passed and you can get back to your new normal. 

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6. Stay in Touch 

After the divorce, you may not want a parent to have a part in your life anymore. 

Or perhaps going back and forth between two homes might be difficult for you. 

During this period, it is even more important to look at the positive side of things and not shut a parent out of your life completely.

Try to keep in touch with both as much as you can. If the move was tough for you, remember it was tougher for them and they'd need your support just as much. If one parent lives far, you could try giving them a call each day.

Even a quick text to let them know you're thinking of them would be thoughtful and make you feel good too. 

Try to update each parent as much as you can on the progress you make in your life. 

Let them know about your academics, your activities, your concerns, even your dates if you're of the age. It will maintain your bond with them. 


Final Thoughts

A divorce is the most sensible thing to do when relationships fall apart and have soured to the extent that reconciliation is impossible. 

As a child, you can support each parent and ask for the same from them so that rather than difficult, the split becomes a blessing for each one of you.


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December 8th, 2022

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