Parenting Beyond Divorce
Updated: Jan 31
When any relationship comes to an end it is difficult but it is even more so when you have children together. As you have to put your feelings aside and concentrate on the kids. But once everything is settled and possesions have been sorted through, finaces seperated and if you were married divorce granted the children still need both parents.
Now as I write this I am aware that this is not an ideal world and not all children can have contact with both their parents for a variety of reasons. However, I write this from the point of view of someone whose daughter has both her mum and dad in her life.
When my marriage came to an end almost two years ago both my ex husband and I were very keen to do what was right by our daughter. This isn't to say that we didn't clash and there wasn't resentment on both sides but at the end of the day while I can't speak for my ex I certainly wanted to do what was right for my little one.
It has been hard and there have been times where I've felt that he didn't deserve to know what was going on with our daughter, or even to have her in his life. But once I calmed down I realised this was my own issues and also that if my ex didn't know what was happening the only one that suffered was really our daughter.
If I could go back to when we seperated and give myself any advice would be to try and not get too angry. And to not worry too much as things will be tough but they will work out in the end.
Now after almost two years my ex and I are at a fairly good place that allows us to parent our daughter together. We are far from perfect but as time goes on we are communicating more about our daughter. Yes I do more of the practical things for our dau hter from hospital appointments, homework and school meetings. But that is due to pracitcalities more than anything else. But despite me doing most of the work I know my ex is interested in what is going on with our daughter, and he often thanks me for keeping him informed. And in return he keeps me informed if our daughter has been unwell or if he's planning on taking her away for a few days he lets me know. This being despite technically speaking he doesn't have to when it's only for a few days.
My advice to anyone who finds themselves in position of parenting after a relationship breakdown is this, no matter what has happened between and your children's other parent it's not their fault. The last thing a child wants is to feel like they're trapped between their parents (i speak from experience as this is what happened to me when my own parents divorced). You don't need to be the best of friends with your ex but you do need to be able to communicate. And at least treat each other with some respect.
To begin with this will possibly be difficult depending on the circumstances of your break up. But hopefully as time passes this will become easier. But if it's difficult don't feel bad to use email to communicate through, my ex and I certainly did this and it did help.
I hope this has helped someone out there.