How Break-Ups Can Affect Parenting

Sad looking siblings with arguing parents behind themHow many people do you know who have children who willingly admit that they are not good parents?
Let’s face it, we all want to think that we are good parents, even when we sometimes are aware that we need to be better for our children’s sake.
But parenting is a difficult task and sometimes, in fact often when you have experienced a break up, it’s really hard to remain focussed and put your child/rens needs first on a consistent basis.
The nature of break-ups is such that you can’t help but lose your footing for a while, making you stumble and fall. Frequently it means that you stay on the ground for a while or get up on shaky, unsteady legs.
You can think of a break-up, being akin to living on a stable, secure piece of land, one day and the next falling between the cracks that have opened up a massive fissure at the base of exactly where you used to live.
From that moment on all the things that you used to be able to take for granted are no longer possible. What was has passed and now you’re going to have to deal with and become accustomed to a new way of life.
But before you try to become accustomed to a new life you’re going to have to cope with the feelings left over from your earlier or recent relationship.
This is rarely easy and takes a lot of time, effort and energy.
Some people try to pretend that they don’t have any feelings for or about their previous partner and think they can simply move on to pastures new, but in time realise that it doesn’t quite work that way and especially if you’ve got children together.
There really is a lot to think about when you come out of a relationship and one of the most crucial things to take enough time to consider is how your child/ren feel about, understand and are adjusting to their parents break-up.
So at a time when you might naturally be inclined to think about your wants needs and feelings, you’re going to have to spend a lot of time thinking about where your child/ren are at
You’re going to have to keep at the forefront of your thoughts that your children are just that and are not able to shut off their feelings about one or both of their parents, or make sense of what’s happened the way adults can.
You have to realise that for children, you and their other parent have provided them with a way of life that has become their norm – that you both as parents are not only their introduction to life, you are their example of the way life should be. To say that children look up to their parents is really a massive understatement.
So when your relationship comes to an end, for your children it can feel like their whole world has ended.
However small or large it may feel for you; for your child it’s like an earthquake and they will need your time, empathy, patience and consistent consideration to help them through this very testing time.
To be a good parent means to be able to constantly put yourself in your child’s shoes and behave according to what is in their best interests in the long term; even though you’ve got all your adult thoughts, feelings and responsibilities to constantly attend to.
It helps to bear in mind that your children are more the victims of a break up than you or your ex partner. After all they did not initiate the break-up, all they are is affected by it.

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