More than 1 in 4 children will experience their parents’ separation and at FMY we are aware that , parenting when you are separated can present some extra challenges. This is why we have teamed up with York Family Mediation Service to offer regular courses for parents who are going through a separation or are working out how to handle issues that can crop up, even years down the line. Here are a few of the ideas that we have found can make a difference for your children :
- Be open and talk. Children not only need to know what is going on, but need to feel that it’s OK to ask questions.
- Reassure them that they will still be loved and cared for by both parents.
- Be reliable about arrangements to see your children.
- Show that you are interested in your child’s views, but make it clear that parents are responsible for the decisions.
- Try and carry on with the usual activities and routines, like seeing friends and members of the extended family.
- Make as few changes as possible. This will help your children feel that, in spite of the difficulties, their parents still care about them and life can be reasonably normal.
- Try not to say negative things about your ex or ask your child to take sides.
Some of these ideas sound obvious, but can be difficult to achieve in practice – so focus on what you CAN do and look after yourself too!