Getting through divorce is difficult for any individual, but the trauma further increases when there are kids involved. Every parent wants the best for their children, but some forget that they divorce their spouse, not their kids. They may move to another partner, but their children remain tied to them forever.
Some divorced dads give up and disconnect from their children after getting separated from their ex-spouses. But the divorce can serve as an opportunity to get connected with your kids all over again.
There are some things that divorced dads should realize as they make a transition from “hubby and father” to “only dad.”
Meet Your Own Parenting Expectations
The only parenting expectations that should matter now are your own. You don’t have to fulfill your ex-wife’s expectations or those of her parents, your parents, and those expert dads talking cheerfully about fatherhood on different television shows. When it comes to your children, you’re the expert who knows what works and what doesn’t for them. Develop your own standards and expectations.
Well, we don’t agree with the idea of part-time dads. There is either a dad or not. As a divorced dad, you may get a chance to spend more time with your kids than other fathers. Regardless of the amount of time you spend with them, if you accomplish it reliably, then you’re certainly a dad.
Your Kids Have Two Homes
And with two homes come two sets of rules. Don’t think of your kids as visiting you. Instead, consider them as living with you. Make your own rules and help them follow those. Don’t let the phrase “Mom doesn’t mind…” go on in your home.
Let Your “Inner Dad” Out
You have an “inner dad.” Every dad does. He lets you know when you should not let your daughter stay up late, when a situation demands strict rules, or when you need an all-out wrestling match with your kids. You’ll get used to this inner dad eventually, and in the process, you’ll become a frank and genuine dad.
Your Problems With the Ex are Separate From Your Kids’ Lives
Keep your parenting separate from any issues you have with your ex. Let your kids know that your love is impenetrable and absolute, even and particularly in the times of something as traumatic as divorce.
If you are dealing with a divorce or having child custody problems, consult the attorneys at Men’s Legal Center to learn more about your options.