Aaron Kaplan offers explains that just because you’re no longer married doesn’t mean that you are automatically not a great parent.
By Aaron Kaplan
It is often asked whether a divorced single parent can truly provide for all their kids’ needs and be a great parent even if their kids are not necessarily living with them full-time. I am going to assume that if you are reading this, you will undoubtedly say, yes!
However, some will argue that just because you’re no longer married doesn’t mean that you are automatically a great parent. After all, you are not necessarily living with your kids full-time anymore, some live quite a distance away, and as a result, don’t get to spend time with their kids very often. It’s really such a pity that many in our society will assert that someone is not a good parent to their kids just because they are divorced, and no longer living with their kids. There are a lot of amazing divorced single parents out there who maintain a strong, active presence in their kids’ lives despite their divorce from the other parent, and all of us can learn a lot from them.
How To Maintain That Parental Bond After Divorce:
Keeping It Close:
You’ve got to admit that children suffer a lot of the consequences of divorce. From irate parents, to separation anxiety, it’s a tough world out there for children whose parents are divorced or getting divorced.
Preserving a relationship with the kids needs sacrifice from both sets of parents. Both mother and father have to be able to set aside their differences long enough to inspect the damage that they have both caused their children. More often than not parents get so engrossed with their own emotional painthat they fail to notice that their children can suffer even more than they do.
Studies show that when both parents make conscious efforts to stay close to each other, they end up having more successful and stable children. Additionally, when parents separate their relationship from the relationships they have with their children, they tend to create a more harmonious relationship with their children.
A Formal Study:
To emphasize the importance of a parent’s proximity to their children, the State University of Arizona conducted a study of college students whose parents where divorced. The researchers observed personality, emotional and mental maturity, health, and even interests in school and success. The researchers found evidence that supports the idea that regardless of whoever has primary custody, it is extremely important that divorced parents be in close proximity of their children.
The findings are very interesting. Statistics clearly show that children whose parents are divorced have healthier and more mature relationships when their parents make a conscious effort of keeping the essence of the family unit intact.
61% of the kids involved in the study asserted that their mother or whoever had primary custody moved them at least an hour’s drive away from the other parent. One of the concerns expressed by the students was getting in between the crossfire. When they stay with one parent during the move, future financial help (like for college) lessened. Example, if they stayed with dad, mom gives less when college comes, and vice versa. In fact the investigation showed that a one hour driving distance between parents after divorce had a negative effect on the children.
Emotional upheaval in children cannot be avoided, but a keener inspection of the kids showed that those whose parents kept them close have a healthier disposition emotionally and mentally.
All in all, the study asserts that divorce does affect children. The way the parents treat each other and the distance they have from their children does have a significant impact that could determine whether the child succeeds or not. It is difficult to make friends with an ex-spouse after all that has been said and done, but it will be more difficult for you as a divorced single parent, when in the future, you see your children suffer the consequences of your action.
As a divorced single parent, it is your responsibility, to yourself and your children to make the supreme sacrifice of making the first step of staying in close proximity to your kids, and doing all that you can to keep a basic family structure intact.
This article originally appeared on Divorced Moms.