Divorce means your kids must move between two homes

On behalf of Barli & Associates LLC posted in blog on Tuesday, November 7, 2017.

Along with the heartache that comes with breaking up a family, divorce means utter change, especially for your children. A new chapter is beginning in their lives and one of the first indications of this is that they will now have to move back and forth between two homes.

As parents, you can help by making the transition as smooth as possible so that your children feel comfortable, even happy, no matter which home they happen to be living in at any one time.

Private spaces

Your children should have spaces they can call their own in the new house. Involve them in the planning. If they have bedrooms of their own, let them pick out paint colors for the walls, a new bedspread or set of sheets. If they must share bedrooms, make sure there are drawers, shelves or closets where they can always keep their belongings.

Calendars and white boards

Help the children keep track of the visitation schedule by putting up calendars at both homes. Use different colors for Dad’s home and Mom’s home, and mark the dates so everyone knows where the kids will be on what days. Use a white board to list house rules. These should be the same at both homes; for example, the time to start homework is 4:00 pm, the time to go to bed is 9:00 pm. Once you establish three or four rules that are common to both homes, the children should follow Dad’s rules at his house and Mom’s rules at hers.

Time for settling in

Professionals advise that you keep arrivals low-key, giving children time to adjust when they first arrive at one home or the other. Your teenage son may want to relax by shooting hoops in front of the garage. Your small daughter may just want to cuddle a bit and have you read to her.

Routine is best

A family law attorney will tell you that maintaining routine is essential for children. They expect it. Routine keeps their world humming along the way it should. There will be issues from time to time–no one has ever said that raising children during a divorce will be easy–but helping them transition smoothly between two homes will be key in keeping problems to a minimum.

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