There are days – yes, weeks and months – when life can seem awfully low. Often overbearing. The weight can seem just too much to carry. Life challenges related to divorce frequently play a part in these circumstances. And when you’re a divorced parent at the same time … well, you know how it feels!
Just know, as well, that you’re not alone. Parenting is tough for everyone, even under the best of circumstances. Parenting through and beyond divorce takes enormous focus and a continuous need for compassion, both for yourself and your children. If you take it day by day, you will find the strength and even the wisdom to make decisions that tap into your innate wisdom and love for your children.
But it’s also essential to parent and nurture yourself at the same time. Take a tip from the airlines when they instruct you to put your oxygen mask on first before providing oxygen to your children. You need to be alert and functioning well before you can make decisions on behalf of the children who matter so deeply to you.
Reach out for support!
So get the help you need to recharge, de-stress and unwind from time to time. Share your frustrations with a caring friend, relative or a compassionate coach who specializes in divorce issues. Join a support group for divorced parents. Reach out to churches, temples or other spiritual resources that empower you. Treat yourself to a massage, concert, evening out, weekend away from the kids or other activity that energizes your psyche. Don’t overlook the value of daily meditation and exercise practices to help you cope with stress and anxiety.
Self-care nurtures the mind and body!
Don’t suffer, brood or bare it alone. We all need help, support and encouragement from an outside source that we respect. We can’t always give it to ourselves – but we can and must let others know when we need a shoulder to cry on, a babysitter for an occasional indulgence or a team of reinforcement when the burden of moving on feels too heavy.
And keep this in mind. Sometimes all you need is to take care of yourself for a few hours or a few days – and you’ll have the clearer perspective you need to make sound decisions on behalf of your children. Whether you’re a divorced co-parent or single parent, remember your first obligation is to parent yourself with loving compassion. Your family will thank you!
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Rosalind Sedacca, CDC is the founder of the Child-Centered Divorce Network, a Divorce & Co-Parenting Coach and author of numerous books and e-courses on divorcing with children and co-parenting successfully. For instant download of her FREE EBOOK onDoing Co-Parenting Right: Success Strategies For Avoiding Painful Mistakes! go to: childcentereddivorce.com/book
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