“I hate going back and forth but it is the only way I can see both of my parents” – Devon, 9 year old
Transitions are a difficult time for children. Design transitions for your children in order to minimize difficulties. This can include some of the following:
1. Preparing the children before a transition. This may include rituals both before and after the transition. It may also include sharing information with the children about what will be happening just after the transition so that they know what to look forward to. Whichever parent the children just left might call them later that day just to say hello or good night.
2. Having overlap time when both parents are together in the children’s presence. Using this time to share information or to coordinate consequences.
3. Keeping the transitions emotionally safe, i.e. free from any chance of conflict. Have a signal suggesting a time to talk later about emotional issues.
4. Providing a way for the children have access to their personal belongings from either home. Parents also need to work out a smooth clothing system. This is especially important if the transitions go through school or daycare.
5. Making the two homes similar makes transitions easier for children.
6. Asking the children what is difficult about transitions for them, to see if there is anything you can do to make them easier.
Editor’s Note: This is an excerpt taken from COPARENTING TRAINING WORKBOOK FOR SEPARATING AND SEPARATED PARENTS, written by Kenneth H. Waldon, PhD and Allan R. Koritzinsky, Esq.
To purchase a copy of this book, please click here: http://unhookedbooks.com/coparenting-workbook/