July 10, 2022
Sending your child back to school after a divorce can be incredibly difficult. Your child may be unsure about how to tell friends and classmates about the divorce, and your child might be uncomfortable with their present living situation that requires splitting time between each parent’s residence. Your child also might be stressed about how extracurricular activities and pick-ups will work now that you are divorced and co-parenting, and how time with friends can be spent at each parent’s residence. Handling issues concerning your child’s friendships from before the divorce can get particularly complicated when the divorce has resulted in the child switching schools and moving away from their old friends and neighborhood.
How can you make things as easy as possible when your child goes back to school after a divorce? The following are some tips from our Illinois divorce attorneys.
It can often be helpful to let your child’s teacher (or teachers) know about the divorce ahead of time, according to Divorce Mag. This way, the teacher can be mindful of issues that arise related to the divorce, and the teacher can let you know if your child’s behavior has shifted once school begins again.
Having a shared calendar with extracurriculars, school drop-off, and pick-up times can be extremely helpful for co-parenting purposes when kids go back to school after a divorce. Additionally, if your child is a teenager, your child can also be involved in the shared calendar and can make any updates or send reminders.
If your child is starting at a new school due to a post-divorce change in residence, you should make plans for your child to see old friends as often as possible. It can be easier for your child to transition to a new school when they know that some things will remain the same.
If you can, and if it is possible, based on your new residence after the divorce and your child’s school plans, maintain consistency with extracurricular activities, sports, and friendship that your child enjoyed before the divorce. If your child can continue to be involved in the same extracurricular activity or on the same recreational sports league, some of the other complications of going back to school after divorce might not feel as daunting.
It is a good idea to help your child practice answering questions about the divorce that they may receive from friends, peers, or teachers. For many circumstances, you may simply want to help your child practice saying that it is not a subject that they want to discuss at that present moment. In other circumstances, especially concerning closer friends and classmates, it can be helpful to talk with your child about the type of information they want to relay and how they want to say it.
If you have questions about parenting after a divorce, one of our experienced Illinois divorce attorneys can speak with you today. Contact Women’s Divorce & Family Law Group to learn more about how we can assist you.