A Mom's Guide to a Good MN DivorceJan 31, 2023
Many times adults get so wrapped up in a divorce that they miss the impact it has on children. It’s essential to focus on the kids and tune in to what they are experiencing while their parents decide to divorce in Minnesota and how life looks post-divorce. During my last podcast, Sarah Armstrong, author of A Mom’s Guide to a Good Divorce, joined me and gave me some fantastic tips on creating a good divorce.
Once a couple has decided a divorce is right for them, discussing support for the children is vital. Being able to step back and recognize that the children didn’t make the decision, yet they will be hugely impacted, is vital to a good divorce. Some of the tips that Sarah provided were:
- Decide what you will tell your children and the support network around your family. Try to have consistent answers with your ex-spouse about why the divorce is happening, putting the drama and negative emotions aside.
- Minimize the gaps in the children's physical environment. These kids will now be living in 2 different homes. How can you keep their environment as calm as possible?
- Reduce the number of items they have to move back and forth between houses. Remember that your children are now becoming professional travelers until they are 18. Reduce the workload for them. Have similar items at each house; if they have a favorite article of clothing or something special, have it at each home to reduce the impact on them.
- How will you do the holidays? Will birthday parties be combined or separate? Evaluate how these things go during the first year after the divorce and what necessary adjustments need to be made for the following years.
- Strengthen your compartmental muscle. Strong emotions can still arise after the divorce, but these should not be discussed with the children. Determine how you would like to share the emotion or thought. If the children are with you, use the muscle to say you will not address that emotion or thought right now and save it for when you are alone or with your robust support system.
Remember that even if the divorce is messy, you have the control to step back and keep your children in focus. You cannot manage your ex-spouse's actions, but you are in charge of your own emotions, thoughts, and actions around your children. If you can focus on the fact that divorce is the best thing for you, your children, and your ex-spouse, you can save your sanity. You are creating the opportunity to live a new phase of life under a new structure. Please contact me if you need co-parenting support.
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