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Positive parenting post-divorce

When individuals allow it to, the divorce process can serve as a catalyst for positive change. In truth, divorce is a process that helps individuals transition from one phase of life to another. Although it can be understandably easy to focus on the grief, anger, frustration and confusion inspired by the end of a marriage, divorce can inspire individuals to lead healthier, happier lives. When individuals who are divorcing are parents, the divorce process can also inspire them to embrace parenthood in healthier and happier ways.

When a marriage is ending, tensions tend to build in ways that the whole family can perceive in one form or another. As a result, parents generally need to help their children to heal from any harm that has been caused by the lead-up to the divorce process and by the process itself. When parents view this healing process as an opportunity for positive bonding and growth, parents can ultimately draw their children closer to them and strengthen their relationships with their children.

For example, if a child is struggling with the loneliness which may occur due to the absence of your spouse, you may be able to find creative ways to help your child feel less alone. Perhaps you will create a new tradition of “camping out” with your child in the living room on Friday nights after you have watched movies and shared stories. Or perhaps you will make extra efforts to be present at your child’s sports games and recitals so that he or she knows that you support him or her.

Positive parenting in the wake of divorce is an art rather than a science. If you are willing to view your new situation as an opportunity to be a better parent and you are willing to put in the effort to make that goal a reality, you really cannot go “wrong” for long.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Five Ways Dads Can Make the Most of Their Dadhood,” Joel Schwartzberg, June 1, 2015

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