Helping your child cope with separation and divorce – more tips for parents

Separation and divorce within families can be a very difficult process for all involved. Parents going through this change can be very concerned about the impact on their children, but there are a few things you can do to help your child manage the changes:

kids-lying-on-mom-3501.  As busy as you are with the process of divorce, try to spend some quality time with your kids. Make sure you have some fun together and get laughing – it is a great stress reliever for everyone. Besides, you need to remind them that life is still fun and exciting despite the tension and changes they are enduring.

2.  It is very helpful to speak to other significant caregivers about the changes that are happening. Speak to your child’s teacher, nanny, and other family members that are involved in your child’s life so that they are all aware of what is happening and can assist in helping your child adjust.

3.  Changes in behaviour and performance at school can be a clue that your child isn’t coping. Try to be sensitive to any changes in your child’s behaviour. It is also useful to have open lines of communication with other adults in your child’s life who are aware of the situation and can be sensitive to behaviour changes in your child.

4.  It may seem a strange thing to say, but looking after your own emotional and physical health and wellbeing is paramount when helping your child manage changes in the family. Your child will be very tuned in to how you are managing the situation to inform them of how they should be managing it. If a child perceives his parents are not coping, it will heighten his sense of anxiety and distress. If a child sees that his parents are able to get on with life despite the difficulties associated with the separation, he will feel more secure in the knowledge that things will be ok.

5.  If you notice that you or your child is struggling then it may be time to seek professional assistance.