Tips for dads after divorce – This is the last in a series of blog posts to help dads get through a divorce, starting from the very beginning.
Assuming now that your divorce is complete, you are sharing custody of the children (although maybe not in the manner you wanted). It is time to get your life back on track, and put the divorce behind you. Things with your ex may still be raw, and arguments can start from the smallest of issues. However, life will get better, despite you not thinking that. A lot of men think that getting back in the saddle is the first step to a new life. They are straight on the dating apps to “discover” a new life.
As with most things, it is best not to rush into a new relationship, the moment you become officially single. It is a good idea, to keep your dating activity separate from your children until you are sure that the person you have met is going to be a long-term partner. No child wants to meet random potential partners if there is not likely to be any long-term commitment.
It is recommended to find your feet in your new divorced status before charging into the world of dating. Your children are going to find it difficult enough with parents in two homes, and likewise, you will find it difficult with the children not being always around.
A parenting agreement as part of the divorce will detail the responsibilities you and your ex have towards the children. This will help avoid any confusion as you move on with your separate live.
If you and your ex can share the same house rules for the children, it will make it easier for them. If the children are young, keep the same bedtimes. There is no gain in letting the children stay up late just because your ex makes them go to bed earlier.
Your children are quite vulnerable at this time, and may not share their feelings with their parents. So be open with the children. They do not need to know the details of your divorce, but if they ask, tell them the truth. Don’t bad mouth your ex to the children either. Your ex is their mother. If you do badmouth their mother, it could go against you in the future.
Relationship with your Ex
Because you are both parents to your children, you will still have to have a relationship, obviously very different to when you were married. It is best for both parties to keep that relationship as amicable as possible. This will benefit you both as well as the children. Keep to your word about childcare arrangements, so you can insist she does the same. You cannot expect your ex to keep to arrangements if you don’t. There will be times when you cannot avoid changing the arrangements, so having co-operation from your ex will make your life a lot easier. One day you will appreciate hearing what said to others “I cannot fault him, he has always been a great dad”
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