Helping children cope with separation
Separation of parents is a harsh reality that many children face during their life. Separation can be traumatizing, painful and cause a lot of stress among your kids. It is extremely important to take good care of your kids and address their concerns, to keep them away from the negative impact of this event. Kids, irrespective of the age, can act in different ways to express their feelings and emotions. As a parent, you can help your children in coping up the stress of separation, making it a less painful event in their life. Although, it is not as simple as it sounds, following tips can be useful in helping children through the separation process.
It is usually good to tell your children about what is happening. Letting your children know about the situation helps you gain their trust and confidence. Children who’re unaware of the situation are more prone towards developing negative reactions and attitude. So, answering the questions of your children, without blaming your ex is a good way to lower the stress and uncertainty they have about their future. It is extremely important to tell your children that they are not responsible for what had happened. They should be told that they are not the guilty party in this conflict and this decision was made by their parents because of various issues they were having with each other.
You need to tell your kids about when, who will be meeting them and where they will be staying. Who will be living with them and so on? Most of the time, children are emotionally hurt when they realize that one of their parent is not living with them anymore. The more you invest your time with the children telling them about the practical arrangements you have made, the better it is.
Making subtle changes in your children life is always better than changing everything at once. Changing everything at once may help you get over with this event quickly, but it is not good for your children. So, it is always better to make gradual changes in your children lives, as they have friends and teachers at school that they don’t want to miss out on, after the traumatic event in their life.
Also read: Changing the children surname
Spending maximum time with your children is a great way to lower their stress and help them get back to their normal lives. Listening carefully to what your children feel and think about separation and letting them share their side of the story will help you understand what impact this event has on their lives. Children may have false ideas about why this event has happened. Correcting their notions and letting them express their emotions and feelings is important to eradicate any negativity from their minds. Moreover, many children hope that their parents will get back together one day. It is always better not to advocate false hope to your children, if you have no plan to resettle with your ex.
It is also good to let your children talk about this with whomever they feel most comfortable with. It may be their friend, relative, cousin or even their neighbour. The more they talk and share this story with their surroundings, the better it is for them to get over this quickly. There are also many books available that can help children get through this phase. Sharing good times with your children, reading them a book and then taking their feedback about the ending is another way to know about their feelings and emotional response.
Engaging kids in different activities may help them come out of the situation quickly. Letting them spend time with their friends, playing their favourite sports, video games and doing things they like most will help them to get back to normal. These activities will distract the children and facilitate them to stay out of the family worries. County councils can also play a role in this. There are many county councils that offer free internet, interactive books, CDs and other relevant material for children. This can help children to socialize and get back to normal.
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