I have so many conflicting thoughts on divorce. When I first learned that divorce was a reality in my life no doubt I cried, I cried a long time and I cried hard. Although my weeping and sorrow was for my failing marriage I mostly hurt for my daughter because I knew this situation was going to be life changing for her.
I was raised as a Christian and having an understanding that the teachings of the Bible discourages divorce, well actually hates divorce and considers it a sin, still I don’t believe that I am a sinner in this case especially because I was forced into this situation and had no say in the outcome. I tried to work on repairing our marriage but received no effort in return and I don’t believe that my God would ever hope for a life of hell for me. There’s just no way a perfect God could expect imperfect humans to obtain such a fallible law.
Looking back I think about my daughter in all this. She was about 2 1/2 years old when the ugly went down and I’m so impressed by her strength and resilience. She cried a handful of times only because she couldn’t understand why I had to drop her off and leave when all she knew before was always having mommy around (because I was a stay-at-home). She quickly understood the situation and found her own way of processing it; mommy has a house and so does daddy and we take turns enjoying spending time with her, it’s as simple as that. I truly believe because my ex and I have a very good co-parenting plan and cordial relationship she easily found comfort in the situation because there is no doubt she is overwhelmed with love and support from both of us.
I try my hardest to not let her see the broken part of me even when I have days it hurts the most. Every now and then a few tears will swell up in my eyes that she notices. She has developed a compassionate side that is far beyond her years. Most times she will softly wipe my tears with her little fingers and say “mommy don’t cry, it’s going to be okay”. There’s no doubt she has a maturity level that is above her little peers. For that I’m so proud to have this little resilient child of mine.
Here are ways to help transition your child/children in a divorce:
-Have a consistent co-parenting plan made together.
-Create a schedule that both sides can agree on, for instance bedtime routine, nap times, etc.
-Make the new environment comfortably happy by having things in the home that bring security to your child; ie. we have the exact same toddler bed so both homes feel familiar. I did surprise her with a shopping trip to Pottery Barn Kids so she could pick her new bed sheets and because of this the version in my home gave her something to look forward to (since it was the new environment; the ex stayed in the family home).
-FaceTime if you can. When your child needs to see the other parent do it, it’s not about you it’s about fulfilling your child’s needs. We FaceTime daily so our daughter can see us every night as part of her bedtime routine and she looks forward to it.
-Never bad talk the other parent in front of your child and always refer to the ex as mommy/daddy and express positive things about the other parent.
-Follow through with what you say. If you promise to take your child to the zoo, do it and always give your child a back-up-plan if it doesn’t work out so they aren’t disappointed but have two possible activities to look forward to.
I hope these ideas help your transitioning efforts and I pray that you continue to be strong and never give up. Stay positive because emotions are on your child’s radar and they understand more than you think.
Blessings to all,