kids after divorce

10 Ways to Stay Connected with Your Kids After Divorce

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It can seem impossible to forgive your ex-wife, but it can be done. One Play of the Day subscriber writes, “I forgave her, but it took me a whole year and I had to forgive her in small sums over the 12 months. I paid those sums whenever I spoke to her and kept myself from rehashing the past. I paid them whenever I saw her with another man and refused self-pity. I paid them whenever I praised her to others when I really wanted to slice away her reputation. Those were the payments – but she never knew about them. However, I never knew her payments, but I know she made them. I can tell.”

Bitterness always eats its possessor. Resolve to make small payments of mercy. You and your children will be better for it. Though you are no longer married to your ex, you are always your children’s father. Here are 10 ways to stay connected to your kids after divorce.

1. Pursue, pursue, and then pursue some more.

Never stop pursuing your kids, no matter what the obstacle. [Tweet This] Maybe they have moved to another state or your ex-wife is sabotaging your efforts to be with them. Do FaceTime, write letters, become a master at diplomacy with their mother, send text and video messages, go to any and all events when you can, and ask them to send you pictures.

2. Make the most of your time.

In most cases of divorce, the mother has custody of the children. An agreement is reached about times that they will be with their father. Plan out your time together so these days are special. Do their favorite things. Play with them. However, have enough flexibility to let them choose what they would like to do. Just make sure they have 100% of your attention the entire time you get to have them.

3. Your home is their home.

You have moved out and now have a new home. This is going to feel strange to your children. Do everything you can to make them feel welcome and wanted in your new place. Dedicate a bedroom solely for their use. Let them decide how to decorate it. This will be exciting for your children and give them a sense of security when staying with you.

4. Share an interest.

Become a student of their interests and learn how to do them. Maybe your son likes snowboarding. Take it up with him. Your daughter might be an avid reader. Pick a book to read together so you can discuss. Find something and build a positive connection with it.

5. A fresh start.

Start a brand new photo album for you and the kids. Always have your phone/camera with you. Take pictures of each weekend and write what you did and where you were. Send the photos to them or post them to social media with their permission.

6. You are still very important.

You will always be their dad. Nothing on earth can change that fact. Your involvement in their life is critical to their future. Research by the University of Delaware concludes that children with involved fathers tend to have higher self-control and self-esteem. They also have stronger social and coping skills.

7. Be respectful of your Ex.

No matter the hurt feelings or circumstances, only speak of your ex-spouse in respectful tones. She is still the mother of your children and they love her. Handle this difficult time with class and dignity. Not doing so is devastating for the mental well-being of your kids.

8. Stay consistent.

Ever since you parted ways, it’s likely you have different ideas than your former wife. However, try to forge an agreement on how you each plan to parent your kids. Consistency is key. Your children will become confused if there are two sets of rules in two separate houses.

9. If you can, live close.

Find a place to live that is close to your kids. It will lessen anxiety knowing Dad is “just down the street.” Picking them up from school, for instance, or taking them to the doctor. Little things mean so much.

10. The new person in your life.

Eventually, you will begin to date again. This can be traumatic to your children, especially to daughters. Be sensitive and careful about how and when you introduce someone new. Also, if you have teens. remember they are watching how you handle dating. Behave as you would have them behave.

Sound Off

How do you stay connected with your kids?

  • KJ

    Great article. All 100% spot on. My ex and I have fully mastered this. It was hard at first but we just did it anyway. After some time we began to rebuild our relationship as friends. My son would ask for “group hugs” and we would happily oblige. I demonstrated respect and made sure he treated his mom the same. I always live within a mile or so of them and my new wife and I go out of our way to help out any way we can. Mom is single so we make sure she has birthday parties and holiday presents etc from our son,we fill in all the gaps in life like a ride home from a medical procedure or really anything she needs. We do this because it’s right,it’s easy and we don’t want them to struggle. My wife and my ex wife exchange texts daily regarding everything from our son to “I’m headed to the store. Do you need anything?” They have laughed together and cried together,supported each other and parented together. We are all a family. I can’t stress enough how positive this has been for our son. He knows that his immediate family is ONE unit undivided and no-one fights. Together we are strong and our son is the happiest honor roll student you could meet. I wish everyone could find this peace and love. It all starts by putting the child’s best interests above everyone else’s resentments and insecurities.

    • Mamamia

      Going along to get along is something that has not only brought the worldly into the church to compromise the doctrine of the scripture to the church but it has led many children to seek compromises that are not according to the Word of God

      Living in compromise with the world in order to make everyone “ok” with what God hates and calls sin is how we got into this present age of ecumencal apostasy that is going one all around us

      One very useful way the devil has succeeded in the effort to destroy the society is the corruption and disintegration of the family

      My husband is nine years younger than I he grew up in an intact family
      However he had many close friendships with children living in blended families which were not a result of a biblical cause but adultery…lust ….covetousness and therefore the two who married continued in adultery

      Their desire to have a peaceful blending called upon the children to accept and adapt to the sin of adultery and so the appearance w of divorce and adultery became that marriage is no big thing

      Consequentially when the world was more appealing to my husband he sought relief from the demands of fidelity Nd the walk in Christ and felt he had the “option” to cheat

      He did not divorce but. created a whole separate family with one of his OW

      I say one because he had Amani adulterous relationships even while he had one lengthy one since the OW came from a blended family and did not want marriage but only money sex and companionship

      Meanwhile I continued to home school and teach our children not thinking anything evil about the lack of my husband’s time and attention but tried to tell him how I missed him but understood how he was having to work so hard because of his love for all of us!

      I told him how sorry I was he was missing so much of our lives and hiow I would be happy with less just so we could be together more

      I did not get married to be alone all the time

      There was no response

      His heart was given away piece by piece like redistribution of wealth he believed every woman who he was attracted to was entitled to his life

      Our children are adults now …D day was not a day to “understand” and accept his willful sin but a day of mourning

      He has since dropped the OW and children but me also and having seen him with yet another woman all of us were a shocked having been sold that he was sorry and loved his children

      They are not buying this now

      He believes that he is forgiven as I have told him but he expects his children to believe his words while he continues to lie and cheat

      The other woman who he secretly began to date thinks he is divorced….we just had our 35th anniversary

      The acceptance of sin as “unavoidable” and “excusable” grew out of teaching from a young age that we are all just animals (evolution) and we are not expecting any boundaries and moral choices

      The world preaches we must all accept and approve of what God hates and warns will lead to corruption destruction and death

      Remarriage for any other reason than death of spouse or adultery by the other spouse is comdemned as adultery

      The liberal church looks just like the world today due to traditions of men and false teaching

      Living in a way that endorses divorce also has led to acceptance of adultery

      The Lord said ” Woe to those by whom offenses come”…the text speaks of the little ones THAT BELIEVE ON ME”

      The Lord calls upon fathers in particular to teach and train their children in the way they should go

      A father is designed by God to have a huge impact upon his children…much of that influence is by way of what the father appears to endorse and accept

      A child who by nature looks up to and believes his father will be called upon to accept whatever their parent places them in to accept and will not learn to fear to sin in what God has commanded

      There is much sin that has been fed into our culture …sown in children forced to accept the sinful choices of the parents

      The crop is coming up bountifully in young adults whose lives are wasted in search of the elusive fulfillment even as they reject the Word of God that doesn’t please their flesh

      God designed man and woman with distinctions and marriage with clear commands and boundaries so that it would yield the peacable first of righteousness

      Failing to follow Him we see more and more people destroyed for lack of knowledge of His ways

      How will they obey ” be not conformed to this world but be he transformed by the renewing of your mind” when the parents are being more concerned with suppressing the Holy Spirit to feel better about their disobedient lives than teaching children to honor God

      What fruit do we see from ongoing and increasing compromise with Gods word today?

      How will this culture bring changes that honor God when it is rotting from the inside and teaching the next generations to compromise in all areas where Fod has spoken clearly about sin and the damage it does?

      Seeking to have sin acceptable and then doable does not change the Word of God one iota but it causes much harm to the name of Jesus Christ in he eyes of those who have not seen any reason or hope in obeying Him because of the urging of those who seek to have their sin accepted and legitimized by the many on the Broadway to destruction

      If the remarriage is according to the truth of how it became a marriage then there is call for following he way God teaches is to live

      But the command also tells us to have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of DARKNESS

      forgiveness from he hurting from a adulterous spouse yes…acceptance and harmony with them can be deadly as it causes sin to appear acceptable and it defines he conscience of repent believers

      It sears the conscience of those intent to disobey in rebellion to the truth of Gods word

      Living in sin without repentance does not work in the person who does not forsake sin to return to walking I truth

      It opens he door to the relationships and minds of those compelled to obey unrighteousness

      The Lord has told us how to walk in His forgiveness

      Casting down imaginations and every HIGH THING THAT HOLDA ITSELF UP AGAINST THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD

      And taking captive EVERY THOUGHT TO THE OBEDIENCE OF CHRIST

      Disobedience and rebellion expand to effect and infect all hose who continue in sin and add the sin of urging others to accept and NORMIZE sin

      Adultery kills the one flesh of the marriage covenant and blending a family of children to accept his is to teach a doctrine of Devils to the young and tender mind

      The woe for such a sinful position against the truth of the way God has defined and commanded man is promised Is indeed woeful …a milestone to any to encourage those around them to accept and normalize and legitimize sinful living

      The wages of sin is death

      How important is your sinful lust to you who divorce for any reason due to a hard and lustful heart?

      Why put children in a position to trust in worldly compromise for your sin sake

      Hegelian dialectic in the church has defiled the Bride of Christ

      Come out from among them and be ye holy as I am Holy says the Lord

      Confess your sin and forsake it lest He come at a time when you thinkers not and find you wanting

      Forgiveness yes

      But not to willful and continual rebellion …go and sin no more

    • Paul_Sp

      Not sure your experience especially with the current and former wives, is very realistic for many.
      And we’re happy that your son is well adjusted.
      “He knows that his immediate family is ONE unit undivided……” Not sure how you’re defining things, but if his biological parents were raising him and are now divorced, that isn’t a true statement as far as I define things. Sounds like euphemistic spin.
      Nice that there’s no fighting though. That should be a goal with all parties in every broken home.

      And I wonder if you personally would be so filled with peace and love if you had divorced then refrained from remarriage?

      • KJ

        We’ll I guess it’s good that your not defining what WE consider family. If you don’t think that a step parent is “family” then that’s your business. We are all happier in our situation than many households with 2 miserable biological parents that can’t get along. As for me being remarried…I didn’t run right out and get remarried. My ex and I were determined from the get go to stay united as parents even in divorce. I was responsible enough to marry a woman who embraces that vs some insecure jealous woman. The ONLY thing that keeps this from be “realistic” for anyone is the fact that LITERALLY putting the children’s needs and well-being ahead of the adults resentments towards eachother is nearly impossible for most.

        • Paul_Sp

          Ohh I don’t want to define what you consider is your “family”. The possible situations a step parent may be in can vary widely so there’s no one pat answer possible to how all members feel about their status in any one family. But they certainly weren’t part of the original one, so things have to be figured out and it’s possible some members may never really like it.

          Who’s arguing that it would be better for anyone to be in a home with two miserable biological parents versus your situation? But those aren’t the only two options either.

          Not so sure that if ex’s don’t have what you have that it equals them not “LITERALLY putting the children’s needs and well-being ahead of the adults resentments towards each other”. There’s no one standard for this, not an on-off switch, rather in degrees.

          I think another reason is simply that people feel they HAVE to display a certain level of disdain for their ex’s, especially when they divorced for no legitimate reason, perhaps boredom or stagnation, and found another to enjoy more.

          Being united as parents after divorce also is on a range, not all or never.

  • Mamamia

    Is 30:1-3
    Is 30:8-13
    Luke 6:46
    Matt 12 :50
    Mark 3:35
    1 john 2:3-6
    Romans 8:8
    Gal 5:16
    Rom 8:13
    2 Tim2:15
    2 Cor 10:5-6
    1 John 2:3-6
    Mark 9:42
    Acts 5:29
    John 14:27
    John 6:63
    Jeremiah 17:9
    Eph 6:17
    Hebrews 4:12
    Mark 10:2-12
    Deut 4:5-9
    Matt 5:18-19
    2 Thes 4:1-4
    1 John 2:15-17
    1John 2:26-29
    Romans 6:18-23
    John 7:24
    2 Tim 3:16
    Matt 4:4
    Hosea 4:6
    Matt 15:9
    Mark 7:7
    Titus 1:14
    2 Thes 2:9-12
    2 Cor 13:5
    Acts 17:11
    Acts 17:30-32
    Rev 22:14-15
    John 14:23-24
    John 14:27

    And having done all stand therefore having your loins gift about with truth proving what is that good and acceptable will of God ….doing all things so as not to bring shame to that worthy name by which we are called…Jesus Christ whose thoughts are higher than our thoughts and is to be praised throughout all eternity for righteous is He who is forever exalted and given a name above all names that are named!

    • Mamamia

      Many “remarriages” at nothing more than accommodating flesh rather than learning from the Lord how to live in the marriage

      Christians or those who say they are believers should be concerned with learning how marriage is to honor Christ

      If pleasing God is ones first concern then divorce would not be an option for believers

      Often times a blended family that is not a result of a biblically defined situation….death of a spouse or abandonment by an unbeliever…..or adultery of the faithful persons spouse…then is defined by scripture and Jesus as adultery

      Not a PC perspective but then the Bible is not PC

      The carnal mind is enmity against the Spirit

      God commands love….of husbands to wives

      Emotions are not commandable
      The love of God which is what a husband is Commanded to learn how to trust God to do is an Act of the Will

      It is by a decision to do what God tells us to do by His empowerment for His glory and our good and the good of others

      Children learn to accept what blended families based upon humanistic “love” to not pay attention to Gods Word ….
      To think serial adultery and polygamous relationships are just another “valid” form of marriage

      Reading the Word it would seem that God does not appreciate man redefining His words or covenants

      So why is anyone surprised with the outcomes of generations of those who accommodate the flesh while living in a form of godliness

      As if God does not see nor care.

      Consideration of His word is badly needed with allowing Him to define His own terms
      Or we can continue to seek ear ticklers to smother the conscience

      It’s what it is

  • Paul_Sp

    Nice article and suggestions. Not all possible in my situation, a very unwanted and unwelcome divorce.
    I think me having to leave the house my boys knew as “home”, combined with their mom having a larger, fun, expended family in the area, made it hard for my boys to want to spend much time at my house. Never felt like home to them, and not for lack of trying on my part.

    The huge variable to this topic is how the kids respond, what they do and don’t like, what makes them feel the least uncomfortable,……..hard to predict and can vary widely. Certainly they appreciate you trying hard to make them a priority, or will when they are older and will never be able to say you gave up on them.

    Certainly peace and respect should be a goal for all involved.

    “Eventually, you will begin to date again.” I will? Good to know, but I wonder when? It’s now been 8.5 yrs since my ex who I loved ended things and sought another man.

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