There is nothing easy about moving from a two-parent home to a single-parent home. You have a lot of things to figure out now, but this doesn’t mean that you can’t work through all the challenges.
You need to come up with a plan for addressing some of the most common struggles that newly single parents face. Some challenges take quite a bit of work while others will resolve more easily.
Work on a respectful relationship with your ex
The cornerstone of a good parenting relationship is mutual respect. You and your ex should work as a team if you are going to help the children thrive. There are going to be times when you won’t agree with your ex. You will have to try to find an answer that is in the best interests of your child. This might require negotiation and compromise but can be rewarding when you see the kids doing their best. Your child custody agreement is the framework for this relationship.
Create a new budget
When you are a single parent, all the bills fall on you. Sit down and write out a new budget based on your income alone. If you receive child or spousal support, you can include that money in your budget. However, it might be a good idea to base your budget solely off your own income just in case those payments from your ex don’t come in as they should.
Remember you are still figuring it all out
It is easy to think that you should have parenting down pat without any issues. Forgive yourself when you make mistakes and remember that you are in the midst of a big change right now. You must figure out what works for your family. This sometimes comes with trial and error so don’t worry if you don’t have everything perfect right away.
Help your children
This isn’t just a big adjustment for you. It is also huge for your children. Make sure that you are checking on them and listening to them. Give them a safe place to voice their concerns and try to work through their emotions. Be patient but don’t think that you have to let them get away with bad behavior. Set the rules and enforcement right from the start. This establishes healthy expectations and gives them the boundaries that children need.