I received an email citing January is the month where the divorce rate is the highest. For many kids this was not on the new year’s resolution list of things to deal with. And yet it happens and they feel powerless to do anything about it. Parents can actually help their children get through this or they can add to the general chaos.
I have found that couples generally fall somewhere between 2 extremes in thinking about their children and divorce.
The first extreme thought is “I choose to inflict pain on my ex by using the children as a weapon of war. This means I will talk bad about my ex to my children, I will barter with my ex for visitation, or I will flat out manipulate the kids to behave badly so my ex will have to deal with poor behavior.”
The second extreme thought is “parenting will be too difficult so I am out of their lives.”
STOP!!! Be honest with yourself. Are you still ticked off with your ex and choose to be difficult to work with? Do you fantasize about moving to Australia because you don’t want to face the reality of rearing children as a single parent?
There is a third option. I propose a new attitude. Copy this next section and read it as an affirmation.
” I want what is best for my child/ren. I will put aside my anger and work with my ex. Together, we will show our children the love and support that they need.”
Commit to saying this every day morning and evening for one month. Slowly, you will be able to really focus past your own hurt to see your children’s hurt. You will be able to bypass your own anger to see your child’s anger. You will be able to respond to the feelings that your children have in order to help them through this difficult time. This option is a selfless option and will take self monitoring.
I believe YOU can do this.