It’s back-to-school season. For parents, that means long nights spent getting school supplies and new clothes. For many kids, it means saying goodbye to summer break and waking up early for classes. But for kids of divorced families, going back to school can be an incredibly stressful time.
According to a study by the American Psychological Association, nearly half of all children in the United States will experience the divorce of their parents before they turn 18. While divorce can be hard on adults, it can be especially difficult for children, with the effects often becoming long-lasting and leading to insecurity and discomfort. In all of the sudden changes, they may feel like they are caught in the middle or are not safe.
Divorce is one of the most challenging things a family can go through. Children may also feel like they are the ones who have to choose between their parents when they get divorced, leading to feelings of insecurity and anxiety.
It is crucial for children to feel safe during this time of upheaval. They need to know that both parents love them and will continue to be involved in their lives. Parents should communicate what is happening so that children can understand what is going on and process their feelings.
Starting a school year off on the right foot can help significantly in this process.
How Divorced Parents Can Help Their Children Adjust
Here are some tips for parents to try to make the divorce process as smooth as possible for their kids:
1. Try to remain civil with your ex-spouse. This civility will help reduce stress and conflict for your children.
2. Keep communication open with your kids. Let them know they are loved and that you are there for them no matter what.
3. Be flexible to a point when it comes to parenting time and custody arrangements. Children need stability, so try to work out the best schedule for everyone involved. An essential part of co-parenting is the ability to remain flexible. However, do not let this flexibility be exploited.
If your kids feel stressed over the situation, make sure they have someone to talk to that they trust that can offer support and understanding. This person may be a family member, teacher, or counselor.
How to Help Children Going Through Back to School Stress
While the added stress of divorcing parents can make back-to-school season stressful, it doesn’t have to be damaging for your kids. Here are some tips to help make the transition smoother:
1. Create a schedule and stick to it. Having a daily routine will help bring some stability during this chaotic time.
2. Communicate with your ex-spouse about school-related issues. This will help avoid any misunderstandings or conflicts down the road.
3. Be patient with your children. They may be feeling anxious or sad about the divorce and need some extra patience and understanding during this already stressful time.