Ten New Year Resolutions for Separated Parents
It's not always easy to get along with our exes, but how about making some New Year Resolutions, for the children's sake?
- Respect and support each other as parents even if you are furious with each other as exes.
- Don’t fight in front of your children and particularly don’t fight about their arrangements in front of them.
- Be happy that your child has another parent. Try to foster their love for the other parent and encourage them to have a healthy relationship.
- Listen to your children and (depending on their ages) allow them a say in the arrangements for their lives. Be prepared for those arrangements to change as they grow and develop.
- Write a Parenting Plan. A Parenting Plan is a written document which spells out how you and the other parent intend on sharing childcare duties and responsibilities going forward. The plan can include everything from where children spend the nights on weekends to who they spend Christmas day with.
- Make a will. You may have written one already, or it may never have crossed your mind, but your new situation requires a new will, or at the very least an update to your existing one.
- Take your time before introducing your children to a new partner, and don’t expect them to click immediately.
- Allow your children the right to express their anger at the new situation without fear that you will become upset or defensive.
- Don’t beat yourself up! Children are adaptable and have been shown to cope well with separation. What causes them long lasting difficulties is on-going conflict between their parents, so if you can overcome that you will have done as much as you can.
- Talk! To each other, to your children, to others who look after them. Keep people in the picture about your new circumstances otherwise they won’t be able to support you. If you can’t talk about things without arguing – you may need to get some help.
Frances or Charles from Progressive Mediation would be happy to talk to you and discuss with you whether mediation might be able to help you and your children. Call 07889 039393