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How Can I Strengthen the Parent-Child Bond?

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When you and your partner separate, this can be difficult for the whole family. In particular, your children may feel incredibly vulnerable. They may not genuinely understand why one parent no longer lives with them. At times, some children may even internalize the blame for the separation, and believe that they might have been the cause. 

It is at this time that both you and your ex-partner may want to work on strengthening your bonds with your children. This can allow you to co-parent more amicably, and show your children that nothing has changed in regard to your love for them.

If you are the person who has moved out of your family home, you may find that your new property lacks some personal touches. Your children may find it difficult to also view this new place as their home. To overcome this, you might want to consider putting up some decorations to signal how important your children are to you. This could involve works of art that they have designed and created, or even photo prints in any shape of some of your favorite memories together. Having family photos on the walls, albeit of just yourself and the children, can help to convince them that, while your relationship with their other parent has broken down, they are still your pride and joy.

At this point, it can also be incredibly vital for you to keep your promises to your children. They may already be struggling with the upheaval in the house. If you were to tell them you will see them on a set day, and then either cancel or not show up, they may start to lose faith in you. In less than amicable situations, this could also be used against you at a later date. When arranging times and dates to see your children, make sure that you try to put them first at all times. While it can be understandable if there are emergencies seldomly, such as due to illness, repeatedly breaking your promises to your children could also have a serious adverse effect on their mental health.

Taking on some tips for how to co-parent with an ex may also be of use to you. Your child may not appreciate being used as a weapon by either party. At the same time, they may also find it incredibly difficult to hear one parent speak badly of the other. Speaking kindly and calmly, both about and to your ex can allow you to model some positive behaviors that your child may require in the future. They may also greatly respect how you manage the situation, especially if the split was due to something out of your control. Removing some of the stress and worries your children might have about your interactions could help you to remain focused on your bond with each other.

You may find that you need to alter some of the ways you parent after a separation. However, you should still continue to find ways to strengthen and secure the bond you share with your children.


Jeff Campbell