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Common Sense Parenting
by Sylvia Cochran

Common Sense Paretning Archive

Child Temper Tantrums

Multiple Kids Birthdays

Separation Anxiety

Parenting After Divorce

Parenting After Divorce

In our last poll, “Parenting After Divorce”, we visited a rather sad dilemma that many divorced couples with children encounter not only during holidays, but year round: how to deal with former in-laws after a split or divorce. The situation is usually this: you and your significant other have split. S/He is a royal jerk and you are somewhat glad that it is finally over. Your children do not feel the same way, but instead want to spend as much time with your ex as possible. Not only that, but they also want to hang out with their aunts, uncles, grandparents, and others. You, on the other hand, have had enough of the whole family. What do you do?

While very obviously one size does not fit all forms of separation anxiety, here are some common sense ideas for your little ones when it comes to dealing with the "other side" of the family:

1. While extending an olive branch is the grown-up thing to do, start small. Do not act like nothing bad ever happened, especially if your former in-laws are blaming you for the breakup, any problems in the relationship, and whatever else may have happened. It is perfectly ok to not run over to their house for Sunday dinner anytime soon, but you should encourage your children to make and maintain contact. This can be done with emails, drawings, pictures, messages your children leave them, and little crafts they send.

2. Remember that you are staying in contact with the in-laws for the sake of your children. As such, you want to be flexible, and permit for extra visits such as barbecues, family celebrations, and other occasions that are special to your in-laws and to which your children are invited. Obviously, you may not wish to attend, but instead of making a big deal about it, simply negotiate with your ex about picking up and dropping off the kids.

3. While it is a good idea to emphasize stronger ties with your side of the family, it is unwise to cut or limit ties your children have with the other side of the family. Please remember that even though you and your ex have called it quits, your children never did the same with their grandparents and other adult relationships.

The First Day at Daycare

first  time daycare

This time around, we want to look at another parenting situation that pertains especially to working parents: the first day of daycare. It is hard enough to deal with some of the guilt of leaving your child in daycare, but how do you prepare your little one for that first day away from you for a whole eight to ten hour stretch?


About Sylvia Cochran

Welcome to the world of a poet and freelance writer who juggles a family, work, and a hundred commitments. Born and raised in Germany, and since 1988 living in the United States, this writer offers a global perspective on parenting issues, everyday living situations, time management, ethics, marriage, and personal growth. She publishes her work at Families Online Magazine, and Bella Online. Contact her with questions and comments at [email protected] and be sure to put “Families Online” into the reference line.

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