As the summer is beginning to wind down a new school year is approaching too quickly. Between living in two different places to trying to figure out the new shared time schedule, your child is experiencing a slew of changes.
Stability should be the most important concern you have for your child as you both take on this upcoming academic year.
These are four tips to help you and your kid wrangle the post-divorce changes before tackling the school year together.
Communicate with your ex and your kids
Instead of living as a family, your kids are splitting time between you and your ex, so communicating with everyone is crucial. This includes staying in contact with your ex. Put your feelings aside and don’t play games, because at the end of the day, the most important person is the child and their well-being.
Share information with each other and coordinate schedules so you can both be in the loop. It is important to keep consistent house rules for the kids to follow. Although one parent may want to seem like the carefree more relaxed parent, this does not benefit your children in the long run. They are experiencing so much change because of the divorce, so consistency and stability is crucial during this time of adjustment.
This separation does not only impact you and your ex, but your kids too. Communicate with your children and make sure they are doing okay. Talk to them about their feelings and how this split could be affecting them. Open communication can better assess how they are handling this change and counsel them through any roadblocks and problems they might be experiencing.
Keep a calendar
Your time is being split between your work schedule and sharing time with your kids, so dates can get confusing. Navigating these different schedules becomes increasingly difficult once the kids go back to school.
Using Google Calendar, smartphone calendars, or a planner can be helpful to organize everyone’s schedule. Dance recitals, science fairs, sports practices, and school assemblies are just a few of the many events dads need to keep track of.
It is important to share this calendar with both parties so everyone has the information they need. Whether it is figuring out the carpool schedule to remembering parent-teacher conference, it is necessary to keep both households in the loop.
Update the teachers
The word family just became a lot more complicated in your children’s lives. Let the teachers know what the situation is. You do not need to give them details, but updating them on the family dynamic and schedule differences keeps the teacher informed of the changes going on in their students’ lives.
They can keep an eye out for behavioral inconsistency or academic problems if issues were to arise. Sometimes teachers might even give the student two sets of textbooks, so they do not have to worry about hauling them to both parents’ houses.
Split the school supplies
It is impractical for both parents to buy two sets of school supplies. Financially, it is unnecessary, and the child will end up with a pile of supplies they do not need. It is best to share the list and the price with your ex. The money will not be split exactly, but this is a good way for Mom and Dad to share and compromise.
It is smart to buy extra supplies of the basics such as pens, pencils, folders, etc., so the kids do not have to carry everything to both houses.
Your children’s well-being and their academic development should be your priorities. Both you and your spouse need to put your adversities aside for the benefit of your children. From focusing on their studies to improving their social development, these four tips will help you and your kids stay organized and maintain healthy relationships.