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Proven strategies to help a child cope with divorce

When a divorce involves children, parents should make sure they do what they can to make things easier on the child. While divorce is a challenging time for the adults, parents should remember to offer hope and encouragement to children.

By concentrating on steps to minimize the negative effects of a divorce, parents can make the best of a difficult situation.

Positive actions for parents to engage in

According to WEBMD, a number of actions are beneficial to children in the midst of a divorce. A parent should try and maintain a normal routine of dealing with a child’s daily activities. That is, the parent should not change his or her attitudes toward discipline or allowing special privileges to compensate for the trials of a divorce. A parent should also encourage the child to reach out to the other parent for conversation. It’s also reasonable for a parent to seek outside help from state or federal agencies or even therapists or psychiatrists when issues seem overwhelming.

Negative actions for parents to avoid

Information from Redbook shows how parents’ actions and words can make a huge difference in helping a child cope with divorce. Among the most basic prohibitions for parents is to not talk poorly about the other parent. Badmouthing the other parent puts the child in a difficult position and often results in feelings of confusion and inadequacy. A related issue is that a parent should never tell a child about grown-up matters such as infidelity.

While a parent might feel better by giving a child lots of presents, this action often has negative consequences. In the end, all the gifts in the world will probably not erase the pain of a divorce for most children.