Children and Divorce Arizona
Divorce is a major adjustment for everyone. Kids sometimes have a harder time post-divorce than their parents do. Then there’s the added challenge of helping stepchildren feel good at home. For some, it can seem like a daunting, if not impossible, task. What can you do to minimize the stress associated with blended families? The most important thing you can do to minimize the stress for the entire family is to help your stepchildren feel at home. It’s a huge adjustment and they’ll need you to focus on making sure it goes well.
First and foremost, make sure all your kids know that you love them. Make it very clear that you aren’t competing for their love or trying to love them “more” than anyone else who loves them. Simply let them know that you love them and want the best for them.
If at all possible, avoid any more big changes. When the situation permits it, make sure that your stepchild still has access to their friends, their school activities, etc. when they are at your home. It will go a long way towards helping them feel like they have a stable environment to call home. Maintain their routines and honor traditions. If they stay late for tutoring after school every Wednesday and Thursday then make sure you accommodate this when they will be coming to your home on those days. If Friday night had always been pizza night, embrace the tradition on their behalf.
Step Parenting After Divorce in Arizona | How to Make it Work
Be extremely cautious in your interactions with the children’s other parent. It’s best if the kids aren’t around if there is going to be an argument. Many children of divorced parents already feel as if their world is spinning out of control. Even after the divorce is final and the aftermath calms down, many hold on to vague feelings of insecurity. Seeing their parents “out of control” will only lend credence to these fears. Never criticize the child’s other parent in front of them as it is also frightening for children to view someone they depend on as weak or insufficient. Then there’s the issue of divided loyalties that can become a real problem for children who are not yet equipped to deal with the complexities of the situation.
Make your time with your stepchildren positive. Do your best to help them view your home as a calm, safe, happy place and you will find the adjustment goes a lot smoother and faster than you might expect. There will be ups and downs, but if you take action immediately to pave the way for them to settle in comfortably, the ups will be far more frequent than the downs.