About Single Parenting (The effects of divorce)

 Today’s topic is Effects of Divorce 2.

 In a prior video I discussed some of the effects of divorce on the children.  There was a recent HBO special by this title and I thought I would revisit the topic.   No one escapes without some effect. It has been reported by  Judith S. Wallerstein and Joan B. Kelly, authors of Surviving the Breakup: How Children and Parents Cope With Divorce that after 5 to 10 years 1/3 of children are OK, 1/3 gave some difficulty and 1/3 have a very difficult time.

 We as parents can do a lot to help

We as parents can do a lot to ease the transition for our kids even though we may be in pain ourselves our kids have a much more difficult time understanding what is happening and what to expect.

For openers, it is important that we give our children unconditional love and support.  We need to reassure them that they will not be abandoned and that we will be there for them. We need to tell them that the divorce is not their fault.

When possible, they need equal access to both parents.  In the HBO documentary, the children had a list of things that they hope for from the parents.  On that list was not fighting in front of the kids and not asking the kids to spy on each other.

 School Age Children

School age children frequently blame themselves and feel that they can solve the problem by being good.  They may act out to get attention or fake illness.  They will try to get their parents back together.  In my personal experience, this is more pronounced around major holidays such as Christmas, birthdays etc. They also fear for the future not being able to envision life after divorce and may fear that they will be abandoned.

Some of the more common signs that children are having difficulty coping include sudden, unexplained changes in behavior, sleep, or eating habits. Fortunately, you can do a lot to help your child by being sensitive to their needs and communicating with them. Be on the lookout for signs your child needs immediate help.  Aggressive behaviour, alcohol and drugs, talk of suicide, cutting class are all signs for concern. Get help from school counselors, a clergyman or your doctor

 Teens and Tweens

Teen and Tweens may have similar responses being concerned for their future and unsure of their place in this strange new world.  In the best of all worlds, communication with teens is difficult.  In the post divorce world it may be borderline impossible.  Teens may be angry and withdrawn and rely on peers for support and encouragement. In these modern days they are likely to blast the news all over the internet.

Violent outbursts, running away, drug and alcohol, cutting class, acting out sexually, suicidal thoughts are all symptoms that your child needs help.

 Drugs and Alcohol

All school age children and tweens and teens can get involved in drugs and alcohol as a way to escape the pain they are feeling. As parents, most of us feel we know our kids well enough that we will be able to spot drug or alcohol use.  Wrong!  By the time we see the symptoms, they are well on their way toward trouble.  I have a webinar running daily at 6:00 PM PDT on teens and alcohol.  It is free and packed full of information.  You can access by clicking here! Teens and alcohol seminar!

As parents the most important actions we can take are to reassure the children they are loved and that the divorce is not their fault. Make sure they feel as secure as we can make them feel about theirr future and be alert for danger signs that indicate they need more help.

In the further information section below, I have listed some websites that offer more information about dating and to single parents.  One of the best sources of data is “About single parenting”, the website by Jennifer Wolf.

How Divorce Affects Children http://emeryondivorce.com/how_divorce_affects_children.php/ How children are affected by divorce is a question of huge importance to your children and, of course, to you. Sadly, experts sometimes are confused about how … Impact of Divorce on Children http://extension.missouri.edu/extensioninfonet/article.asp?id=2150 Impact of Divorce on Children. sound clip Listen to the article. Divorce affects children differently, depending on their gender, age and stage of development. Effect of Divorce On ChildrenEffect Of Divorce On Children | Learn … http://www.effectofdivorceonchildren.net/ Learn about the effects of divorce on children and how they can be prevented. The Impact of Divorce on Young Children and Adolescents … http://www.psychologytoday.com/…childs…/the-impact-divorce-young-chi… Dec 19, 2011 — In response to my blog about single parenting adolescents, I received this email request: “I was wondering if you could address the effects of … The effects of Divorce on Children and Education http://www.divorcewizards.com/The-effects-of-Divorce-on-Children-and-… Children exposed to divorce are twice as likely to repeat a grade and five times likelier to be expelled or suspended from school, according to the article. [PDF] The Effects of Divorce on Children – Family Research Council http://downloads.frc.org/EF/EF12A22.pdf File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat – Quick View by PF Fagan – 2012 – Cited by 7 – Related articles The Effects of Divorce on Children. Patrick F. Fagan and Aaron Churchill. January 11, 2012. Introduction. Crazaberamer Each year, over a million American children suffer the … [PDF] The Effects of Divorce on Children – North Carolina Cooperative … http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/fcs/pdfs/fcs471.pdf File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat – Quick View Focus on Kids: The Effects of. Divorce on Children. Distributed in furtherance of the Acts of Congress of. May 8 and June 30, 1914. Employment and program ..

 

 

 

 

 

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Integrating Single Families Together

Todays topic is integrating together single families.

The Brady Bunch works well on TV

I will start off by observing that the Brady Bunch works far better on television than it does in real life.  In our real world, whenever there are two families to integrate together and both have children, there will be considerable issues among the children.

I had two children.  It was therefore impossible for me to find or date a woman who had  children and expect that both of my children would like her children.  What I mean is, even if my date had only one child, at least one of my children would not like her child.  Simple!  That’s the way it works. Or so it seemed to me.  I wasn’t alone in reaching this conclusion.  Since I was a single parent, I tended to have a circle of friends that were in the same position.  They always admitted to similar problems in their dating life.  I had one lady friend who had completely given up dating because she didn’t want to deal with the inevitable conflicts that arose among the children.

I wasn’t quite so ready to quit although there were plenty of long, shall we just call them dry spells, during which I wasn’t dating anyone.

Conflicts among the children are inevitable

 As I mentioned, when the children first came to live with me, I had a friend I had been dating for some time.  After the children moved in, this arrangement continued for another year or so.  In fact, for some time, she lived with me. Her two girls, and my boy and girl all together living happily!  Right?  Wrong!  The conflicts among the kids were very troublesome and very difficult to deal with.  There are not only the jealousies one would expect among the kids, there are also the inevitable problems among the adults.

We both had been single for some time and both had developed our own habits and techniques for dealing with our kids.  Even in a two parent household, there are the inevitable attempts to play off mommy versus daddy.  You know, there are frequent times when a child will ask one parent for something and if they don’t get the answer they want, then it’s off to try the other parent. Not uncommon is a certain degree of misrepresentation as well.  You know what I mean.  I am talking about the inevitable, “Daddy , Mommy said I should ask you if it’s ok to do such and such”  Thus implying that Mommy said “yes if Daddy agrees” when in fact what Mommy said was “No”!

This sort of playing off between the adults is exaggerated in the two family household.  It starts with, “That’s not the way my mommy does it” or ” I don’t have to listen to you cause you’re not my real dad”.  Inevitably, there are differences between the way you and your new friend deal with individual problems.

There are also differences in the way the individual kids have been dealt with.  For your new relation to have even a tiny chance of survival, it is important to reach lots of agreements ahead of time.  This is probably an area were written rules and consequences that everyone agrees to are as helpful as they can ever be.

 Disagreements among the adults

Inevitably, you and your new friend will have disagreements over which one of you is too strict or too lenient. You will disagree on the proper punishment for some crime and the things that are to be considered crimes in the first place.  Perhaps you have fastidiously enforced a rule that strictly limits the amount of television the children are permitted to watch every day and your new friend has never set such limits.  Now what do you do?  Seemingly simple things like how much TV is ok and when it is ok will cause enormous problems if not agreed on ahead of time.  They not only cause problems between you and your friend, they cause conflict between your kids and the “other” kids.

“Dad, Johnny’s a brat.  I told him to turn off the television and he wouldn’t, so I just walked up and turned it off.  Meanwhile Johnny is off telling his mom what a brat your kid is for turning off the television and so the battle lines are drawn.

The simple things we almost all take for granted will become conflicts if permitted to.  Homework time, when is it done? How much is done?  TV time, when and how much?  Snacks after school.  What’s permitted and what isn’t.  Food for dinner.  Your kids won’t like your friend’s menu selections and her kids won’t like yours.  Unless its McDonald’s then at least the kids can agree on it (maybe)!  And if you think the menu selections are a problem, wait until you hear what the kids think of the others persons cooking.

I came to the conclusion that the problems of integrating together single families were so severe as to be not worth the emotional price that one has to pay to get it done.  I did however, continue to date but always tried to find situations and dates that the kids were comfortable with.  Frequently, the kids were included on dates.  A day at the park, or the zoo or a camping trip or something else the kids could participate in.  This way I minimized their feeling of being excluded.

Besides, I always enjoyed the company of a good woman and felt it was easier to have someone else along to help ride herd on things.  The obvious result was the kids felt included, they had someone other than just me to “play” with and I had adult companionship; usually an all around win for everyone.

Dating A Single Mother – AskMen

http://www.askmen.com/dating/dating_advice…/73_dating_tips.html

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Single mom – Dating single mothers. For the bachelor not yet burdened with a family, few scenarios are as daunting as dating a single mother. You may have

Dating tips for single parents – CNN.com

http://www.cnn.com/2011/…/05/…/datingsingle.parents…/index.html

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25 May 2011 – You’ve mastered the playdate, but now it’s time for the date-date. If you’re feeling nervous or confused about entering the complex world of

Dating Guidelines for Single Parents, single parent … – Tina B. Tessina

http://www.tinatessina.com/single_parents.html

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Tina B. Tessina, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, author books about: dating, relationship advice, addiction, self help, interracial dating, recovery,

SingleParentMeet.com – Online Dating Network for Single Parents

http://www.singleparentmeet.com

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Are you a single mom or single dad? Parents without partners trust SingleParentMeet.com to help them succeed at online dating.

Single Parents Dating Tips – Dating Advice For Single Parents …

http://www.parenting.com/gallery/dating-tips-for-singleparents

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You’ve mastered the playdate, but now it’s time for the date-date. If you’re feeling nervous or confused about entering the complex world of dating again, you’re

Single Parenting: Dating Issues When You Have Children

http://extension.unh.edu/family/documents/s_dating.pdf

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Family Development Fact Sheet. Call your county Extension office for more information. Take your time. sherrirhodesrte88.blogspot.com . After a separation, divorce, or the death of a loved one,

http://Adolescence and the Dating Parent | Psychology Today

http://www.psychologytoday.com/…/adolescence-and-the-datingpar

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9 Apr 2012 – Parental dating is complicated for a single parent and adolescent. By Carl E. Pickhardt, Ph.D….

Dating And The Single Parent – Making Lemonade

http://makinglemonade.com/DatingandSingleParent.pdf

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Dating as a single parent is an interesting and complex topic that single parents, at In my mind, their are two types of dating for single parents. The first type,

 

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Sex and the single parent-enjoying intimacy

Hi, It’s Len.  The creator of singleparenting.us and author of the book, “Adventures in Single Parenting”. Welcome to this video. Today’s topic is sex and the single parent.

 What! After all this you still have energy left for “you know what”? How can that be?  You truly are superhuman!  Well I did too and I suppose I have to be quite frank about it. First, I was (still am) an adult male who subscribed to the “use it or lose it” philosophy and I certainly had no intention of losing it.  When the kids first came to live with me, I was already involved with a lady who had two kids of her own. This friendship had been developing for some time even before my kids came to live with me.  It was therefore natural to expect it to continue and for the most part, there were no immediate problems.

Ultimately, this relationship failed primarily due to conflicts amongst the kids.  In another video, I discuss integrating families together and some of the consequences.  So here I was dating again and maybe you are also.

No matter how you do it, sooner or later your children are going to figure out that you are out dining, dancing and having sex and it isn’t with your former spouse.  Most single parents start to date.  And many engage in sex, often with more than one person.  The critical thing is that it be done discreetly, with a sense of appropriate timing and with special sensitivity to children, and with recognition that children will have different reactions depending on their age.

This desire to get the family back together is not limited to young children.  They seem to never get over the idea that we will reunite with our former spouse.  This notion persisted well into the teenage years with my kids. It’s not clear to me whether or not my son has ever really accepted the fact even to this day, that it is not going to happen.

On the positive side of things, it is important for the children to see real intimacy between you and your new friend.  It is here that they will hopefully form a positive image of what it is all about to form relationships.  The final days or years of your marriage may have been marred by open conflict.  This then is what your children know about adult relations.  They know that adult relations don’t work very well and they are likely to repeat the same scenario in their own relationships. They have not seen a working adult relation; they have only been exposed to one that didn’t work.

Your dating and your new friends provide an opportunity to teach them a different way, a better way.  You have the chance through your dates to show the children what healthy adult friendships and relationships should be like and to repair some of the damage done by the final days of the marriage.

Now if you haven’t already,  go check out my website http://singleparenting.us.  Let’s get to know each other.  Good luck in the days ahead. My wish for you is that your children grow up healthy, and contribute to society in a positive way.  I’m here to help you get there. We’ll talk again.  This is Len. Bye for now!

Additional Information:

 

Dating A Single Mother – AskMen

http://www.askmen.com/dating/dating_advice…/73_dating_tips.html

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Single mom – Dating single mothers. For the bachelor not yet burdened with a family, few scenarios are as daunting as dating a single mother. You may have

Dating tips for single parents – CNN.com

http://www.cnn.com/2011/…/05/…/datingsingle.parents…/index.html

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

25 May 2011 – You’ve mastered the playdate, but now it’s time for the date-date. If you’re feeling nervous or confused about entering the complex world of

Dating Guidelines for Single Parents, single parent … – Tina B. Tessina

http://www.tinatessina.com/single_parents.html

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Tina B. Tessina, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, author books about: dating, relationship advice, addiction, self help, interracial dating, recovery,

SingleParentMeet.com – Online Dating Network for Single Parents

http://www.singleparentmeet.com

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Are you a single mom or single dad? Parents without partners trust SingleParentMeet.com to help them succeed at online dating.

Single Parents Dating Tips – Dating Advice For Single Parents …

http://www.parenting.com/gallery/dating-tips-for-singleparents

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

You’ve mastered the playdate, but now it’s time for the date-date. If you’re feeling nervous or confused about entering the complex world of dating again, you’re

Single Parenting: Dating Issues When You Have Children

http://extension.unh.edu/family/documents/s_dating.pdf

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Family Development Fact Sheet. Call your county Extension office for more information. Take your time. After a separation, divorce, or the death of a loved one,

http://Adolescence and the Dating Parent | Psychology Today

http://www.psychologytoday.com/…/adolescence-and-the-datingpar

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

9 Apr 2012 – Parental dating is complicated for a single parent and adolescent. By Carl E. Pickhardt, Ph.D….

Dating And The Single Parent – Making Lemonade

http://makinglemonade.com/DatingandSingleParent.pdf

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Dating as a single parent is an interesting and complex topic that single parents, at In my mind, their are two types of dating for single parents. The first type,

 

 

 

 

 

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Sex and the single parent-dating again

Looking for intimacy? 

So you are feeling the need for some more intimate adult companionship than your circle of friends and you want to start dating again.

 Commnicate

The first, and very important step, is to talk to your kids about your desire to date. The kids will probably see your new date as a threat to the still existent notion that somehow the relation between you and your former spouse will be mended. No matter what the problems were and how severe, your children may still harbor a notion that you and your former spouse will reunite.

They might ask questions like, “Why can’t you just date (insert dad or mom)?  Be prepared to be honest without being negative.  Support the other person with statements like, “You know your dad (or mom) is a good person, he and I just don’t get along

The children want to see themselves and their parents as a normal family unit.  They don’t like the idea of weekend visits and exchanging holidays.

 The children need reassured you will still be there for them

They also feel the loss of the non-custodial parent and depending on where your children are in their own development cycle, they might see your dating and your new friend as a threat to their own relation with you. They may even feel threatened to the point that they believe if you continue on with your new relationship that they will lose you and be left with no parents at all.

Communicate

So once again, the message is communicate your intentions.  Your kids have a right to know whether you’re building casual friendships or whether you really hope to get married again (or for the first time). Be honest with their questions and don’t be afraid to say, “I’m not ready to answer that at this time.” Look, your kids are your family. Crazaberamer . Of course, you can’t predict the future, but you can clue them in to your intentions.

So what’s next?

 Alright so you have gone on a date now what?  Go slow.  The potential to get hurt again is huge and the risk of hurting the kids is also there.  Don’t bring a new friend into your home until you really know them well and are confident that the relation has some stability.  Your new friend will probably try hard to impress the kids which means they will become attached. But of course that means they are vulnerable to being hurt again if you and your new friend break up. So once again, proceed with caution.

Finding someone to date

It’s hard enough when you are single and not a parent to find someone to date.  It is really very difficult when you have all the other responsibilities of single parenting.  I personally have had some luck with on line dating services.  Stay with the more reputable ones.  Of course, any time you are meeting someone “on line” you run some risk so proceed with caution.

Meet up groups

 Personally I also like the myriad of clubs and activities that are available.  I prefer outdoors stuff so I belong to a water ski club, sailing club and snow ski club.  There are many good clubs to join that provide a social outlet and an opportunity to meet new friends.  Whatever your interest is, there is probably a meet up nea by that caters to it.  If not, start your own.  Starting a meetup is easy

 

Dating A Single Mother – AskMen

http://www.askmen.com/dating/dating_advice…/73_dating_tips.html

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Single mom – Dating single mothers. For the bachelor not yet burdened with a family, few scenarios are as daunting as dating a single mother. You may have

Dating tips for single parents – CNN.com

http://www.cnn.com/2011/…/05/…/datingsingle.parents…/index.html

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

25 May 2011 – You’ve mastered the playdate, but now it’s time for the date-date. If you’re feeling nervous or confused about entering the complex world of

Dating Guidelines for Single Parents, single parent … – Tina B. Tessina

http://www.tinatessina.com/single_parents.html

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Tina B. Tessina, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, author books about: dating, relationship advice, addiction, self help, interracial dating, recovery,

SingleParentMeet.com – Online Dating Network for Single Parents

http://www.singleparentmeet.com

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Are you a single mom or single dad? Parents without partners trust SingleParentMeet.com to help them succeed at online dating.

Single Parents Dating Tips – Dating Advice For Single Parents …

http://www.parenting.com/gallery/dating-tips-for-singleparents

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

You’ve mastered the playdate, but now it’s time for the date-date. If you’re feeling nervous or confused about entering the complex world of dating again, you’re

Single Parenting: Dating Issues When You Have Children

http://extension.unh.edu/family/documents/s_dating.pdf

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Family Development Fact Sheet. Call your county Extension office for more information. Conssymroycupo . Take your time. After a separation, divorce, or the death of a loved one,

http://Adolescence and the Dating Parent | Psychology Today

http://www.psychologytoday.com/…/adolescence-and-the-datingpar

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

9 Apr 2012 – Parental dating is complicated for a single parent and adolescent. By Carl E. Pickhardt, Ph.D….

Dating And The Single Parent – Making Lemonade

http://makinglemonade.com/DatingandSingleParent.pdf

You +1’d this publicly. Undo

Dating as a single parent is an interesting and complex topic that single parents, at In my mind, their are two types of dating for single parents. The first type,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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