My advice to you during this difficult time.

1. Accept the divorce. Create a new relationship with the other parent. The goal of this new relationship is to parent happy, well-adjusted children with healthy self-esteem. This new relationship will need new boundaries, which include: politeness to the other parent, acknowledgment of the other parent’s importance to raising your children, and minimal personal disclosures to the other parent. Your new relationship is co-directors and your business is your children.

2. Accept that your divorce, no matter how well executed, will put your children’s lives into chaos for one year. Divorce is an emotional roller-coaster for parents and children. Over the past fifteen + years, I have witnessed my clients go through highs and lows during the first year of the divorce. Clients generally experience a renewed sense of freedom from the other parent, which manifests itself in wanting to experience, or re-experience, different ways of life. These changes impact your children’s lives. Take this new road slowly. A year to your children during and immediately after the divorce is lightening quick. Your children are experiencing so many changes between their home, the time they spend with each parent, and other impacts upon their lives. They do not need the additional change of their parents activities, moods, or renewed sense of freedom.

3. Accept you will lose some power over your children’s future. There are now two homes and two parents. You no longer can control whether or not they eat fruity puffs for breakfast, nor can you control whether or not your spouse reads to the children at night.

4. Accept that no matter how much your children love you, they will experience a transition into your parenting time, each and every time. Transitioning into either parent’s home can be very difficult. Some parents have found success in creating a moment for the children that is the same each and every time they cross the door’s threshold, such as making pizza together, watching a movie together with popcorn. The key is an activity that allows for re-bonding and re-acclimation into the environment, each and every time. Allowing the children an opportunity to remember your personality quirks.