"Children are resilient. They'll bounce back."
If you are in the midst of a divorce, you've likely heard these words. And as hurting parents, we hope it's true. We pray that our children will walk through the pain with few scars and little emotional pain. But while children do learn to adapt in even the toughest circumstances, divorce brings painful wounds, and they need our help to find healing.
Because of divorce, children will grieve a number of losses. One parent has moved out, and depending on the financial situation, the children may have to move to a new home, losing familiar surroundings. Friendships sometimes change, siblings grieve, money may be tight and their custodial parent may be hurt and angry as well. All sense of security and safety is compromised as children look around to see their new, unsettled world.
So what can a parent do? For many of us, the divorce was a shock to our system. How can we begin to heal ourselves, much less help our child? Throughout this series of articles, you'll find practical help on getting healing for yourself, keeping your family functional, comforting your children and letting them remain kids in the midst of a grown-up loss.