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4 Tips for Back-to-School Time for Newly-Divorced Parents

Posted on in Divorce

Arlington Heights divorce lawyer back to school“What did you do this summer?” This question is often asked when children go back to school, but for some children, summer was not all pool parties and playgrounds. For a child whose parents got a divorce over the summer, this question can be intimidating and stressful. A child who has divorced parents can exhibit certain behaviors and symptoms in school which can affect their education if not handled properly. The logistics of having a child in school can be complicated for any family, and a family with divorced parents can experience more stress and trouble than others. However, by following these tips, you can help your child’s school year go more smoothly:

1. Determine Who Will Pay for School Supplies

A new school year means new school clothes, shoes, uniforms, backpacks, and lunch boxes--not to mention the long list of school supplies. These costs add up quickly, so you should determine how they will be divided between you and your ex. If you already have a preset arrangement, stick to that. If not, dividing the cost in half is usually a good way to meet your child’s needs without causing conflict.

2. Tell Teachers About the Recent Divorce

Even if your divorce was finalized months ago, your child could still be going through the process of coping with the change. Experts say that it takes about a year for children to work through their feelings about the divorce and discover ways to cope with it. Children of divorced parents can exhibit behaviors such as acting out or having a hard time concentrating. Giving teachers a heads up will help them be a little more understanding if these behaviors do happen.

3. Keep Disagreements to Yourselves

Often, parents will disagree on how their children should be educated or how to handle issues that may arise related to behavior, discipline, or extracurricular activities. You should never put your child in the middle of your arguments--they should be focused on their education, not your conflict. You should also never put the teacher in the middle of your disagreements. Teachers have enough problems, and settling your arguments is not their job.

4. Share Information With Your Ex

Throughout the school year, there will be events that both you and your ex will want to attend--and you should both go. Even if your divorce was less than amicable, you should strive to set your differences aside and put your child’s best interests first. Attending events like concerts and science fairs together shows your child that you both care, and attending parent-teacher conferences and open houses together ensures that you are both in the loop. Online calendars can be a lifesaver for this, and there are also many apps that can help with collaborative scheduling.

Consult With a Palatine Parenting Plan Attorney

Children of newly-divorced parents can be anxious and stressed, and the beginning of a new school year can exacerbate that anxiety. You can help your child by making sure there are little to no arguments between you and your ex and that everything goes as smoothly as possible. If you and your ex have not already come to an agreement about how you will handle the school year, you should contact a Rolling Meadows divorce lawyer who is skilled in creating comprehensive parenting plans. Call our office at 847-995-9999 to set up a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/10-ways-these-divorced-parents-make-back-to-school-time-less-stressful_us_55db5e8be4b0a40aa3ab9d9e

https://www.divorcemag.com/articles/back-to-school-tips-for-families-after-separation-or-divorce/

https://psychcentral.com/lib/the-new-school-year-and-the-divorced-parent/

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