The teenage years can very a very challenging time for parents and teens alike. Dealing with a divorce on top of everything else can be especially difficult during these particular years. With a little bit of help and guidance, however, teens can get through these situations and pull through the tough times to be stronger and healthier individuals in the future. What follows is a brief list of suggestions to help teens cope with divorce.
Notify a School Counselor
It is always best to be proactive in these kinds of situations. Notify your child’s counselor and let them know what is going on. The counselor has been properly trained and can speak with your child about what he or she is feeling. Children are often afraid to discuss difficult feelings surrounding subjects like divorce, so it can be very good for all involved. Additionally, counselors will speak with your child’s teachers so that everyone is in the loop and looking out for your child’s best interest.
Teen angst is a very real thing and can be amplified greatly by a stressful situation like a dissolving family. Encourage your teen to express their feelings in a constructive manner. Journaling is a very cathartic way of keeping track of one’s feelings without taking them out on other people and can seriously help out in the long run.
Keep Lines of Communication Open
Now is not the time to let your children go about their business. It is of the utmost importance that you keep the lines of communication wide open. Be there to answer questions and talk with your teen about what is going on. Honesty is always the best policy, so do your best to answer all questions in this manner when it is appropriate. Use caution, however, if infidelity is involved. Adult situations and adult emotions can be difficult for teens to process.
An Opportunity for Growth
Explain to your teen that sometimes things in life don’t work out. As long as you can say you really tried your best at something, there is nothing to be ashamed of when nature runs its course. Life is cyclical and some relationships last longer than others. The most important message to convey is that you will always love and be there for your child, no matter how they are behaving in the present. These times may be difficult, but you can and will get through them.
This post was contributed by Courtney Phillips, who writes about accredited homeschools. She welcomes your feedback at CourtneyPhillips80 at gmail.com