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Whatever past pitfalls you've experienced on Mother's Day as a biological mom or stepmom, remember that you can change it just by how you choose to think about it. We create our own reality. We all matter in our child(ren)'s life.
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We want to prepare and protect our child against something dangerous. Our protective role is clear. So the truly complicating factor that makes talking to your children about divorce so difficult is that the parents are the source of the pain.
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As a child and family therapist I have been assisting parents in having difficult conversations with their children on a variety of topics. As a parent I have had to have these same conversations with my own children.
Your children need to know they are front and centre in both your lives. Sending this message of undivided love begins with considering doing the unthinkable; reconciliation. This shows your children...
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Twenty-five years ago I would have told you I was the luckiest woman in the world. I was married to my best friend who I adored and had two wonderful sons. I had it all including the home and picket fence. As it turned out, there was no luck in my marriage. The marital secrets he revealed crippled me emotionally for years after the breakup.
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Becoming a co-parent is a life-changing experience. It's like jumping off a cliff and hoping for the best. At the beginning, it was challenging to refrain from criticizing the other parent in front of our child. I knew it was wrong because, as a child, I remembered my parents doing the same.
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Ex spouses with children need to learn how to communicate in a way that will allow them to go forward as parenting-partners for their children. You never want your children to have to choose sides. So how can you go about becoming a better Co-parent and live in harmony?
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Allow your children time to grieve and remain open to ongoing conversations after the big announcement. If your children are asking you questions, this is positive. Encourage further conversations and be open to their questions, thoughts, and feelings. You may want to consider setting up a time for the children to talk with a therapist at some point.
Children may worry they are being disloyal if they start to have too much fun with one parent. They also worry about the parent that they are not with, wondering if that parent is okay. Sometimes they just deeply miss the parent they are not with. The familiar traditions may be gone and this can leave the children feeling as though something or someone is missing.
I think people my age, more than generations previously, have friendships with their parents. You talk about things you maybe shouldn't. For women our age, there is less of a physical and intellectual generation gap between mothers and daughters.
It is not news that divorce rates are on the rise. Single parent and blended families have become the norm in recent years. Divorces are never easier, even more so when children are involved and tend to affect children the hardest. Tammy Daughtry, CEO of Co-Parenting International and Co-Parenting Coach has advice to ease the divorce process on your children.