Divorce is a critical situation that affects all family members especially kids. It needs to be handled with care from both parents’ sides to move on with the least damage and to ensure that it will not complicate the children’s future.
The common divorced dad stereotype is that he abandons his children with no regret. However, many single dads are extremely involved and are keen to maintain a stable life for their kids. It can be confusing for a divorced dad at times because parenting is hard.
These are golden tips that can help a dad guarantee a healthy successful relationship with his kids after divorce.
- Don’t be a part-time dad
- Avoid arguments in front of the kids
- Communicate openly with your ex-wife
- Seek professional help
- Have family time
- Don’t feel guilty
- Don’t break the rules to be loved
- Make your kids feel at home
Don’t be a part-time dad
Many might think that being a part-time dad is expected as most children stay with their moms. However, it’s about the quality time you spend with your kids, not the amount of time. Being a divorced dad doesn’t cancel your critical role in the kids’ lives.
Try your best to be present on every important occasion for your children like birthdays and school events. Help them in their life struggles and ensure them that you will always be there whenever they need you. A video call with your son when he’s having a bad day can make a difference. Take them to a swimming class or a doctor’s appointment.
Avoid arguments in front of the kids
After divorce, it’s common for couples to argue about finances. Avoid any confrontations in front of the kids. Speak to your ex-wife privately and keep any conflicts away from the kids.
Communicate openly with your ex
While honest communication is important in any relationship, it’s essential after divorce. It’s crucial to be open with the mother of your kids about everything to get over any sensitivities. This will enable both of you to sustain the psychological well-being of your kids. Don’t let your child take advantage of the lack of communication between you and the mother and break rules.
Seek professional help
If you are in a bad emotional and mental state after divorce, you might not be able to help your kids. This will make your problems worse. A psychiatrist or psychologist can guide you in supporting your children’s needs during this phase; therapy can also help in solving any conflict with your ex-wife about raising the kids especially when you’re both traumatized. Seeking professional help doesn’t mean you are a weak person.
Enjoy family time
In a perfect world, the couple should be able to spend time together with the kids. However, if you are both pretending to be fine, everyone will be uncomfortable. Don’t rush into anything, take your time.
Don’t feel guilty
Every father needs to build a healthy family for his kids. Failing will trigger the father’s guilt. Be sure that your guilt won’t help your children by any means. Your kids need your sense of responsibility rather than regret. Focus on maintaining a healthy relationship where they can be themselves and get over the idea that you and their mother have to be together.
Don’t break the rules to be loved
The common narrative after divorce is kids living a strict life with the mom and a loose easy-going one with the dad. If you tend to be lenient with your kids, there is a thin red line between being affectionate and spoiling them to win their satisfaction. The best way is to arrange with your ex-wife a set of rules to be applied by both of you. Always remember that kids are intelligent by nature and might abuse this.
Make your kids feel at home
It;s important to start your new life in a child-friendly home rather than a bachelor pad. Allocate a room for them with all their belongings, so they don’t have to annoyingly pack many things every time they come to stay at your place. They can even help you decorate.
Further reading: 5 Single Mom Struggles and How to Overcome Them