What... (i.e. camp, dance class, birthday party)
        
 
Pick a NYMetroParents Region: All Regions   Manhattan    Brooklyn    Queens    Westchester    Rockland   Fairfield    Nassau    Suffolk  

Resources

   

ASK THE EXPERT: HOW CAN I PREVENT MY CHILD FROM GROWING UP TOO FAST DURING A DIVORCE?

     Home  >  Articles  > News & Tips: Services
by NYMetroParents Staff

Related: children and divorce, helping children through divorce, family mediation, child stress during divorce,


After a divorce, children may worry about their parents and feel the need to take on adult responsibilities in the home. Lesley Friedland, a family law attorney and mediator, offers advice on how to keep your children out of "grown-up problems" and help reduce their anxiety about the divorce process.

 

stressed boyQ: I am a single mother and I worry that my son is growing up too fast—worrying about me, taking on things that his father used to...How can I mitigate that and give him back his childhood?

LF: Kids often take on the worries and responsibilities of their parents. However, it is the parents' job to help mitigate any harmful effects of a divorce or separation.

Most importantly, parents really need to work together. They should try to discuss any issues going on with their kids to help lessen what the children have to handle. Any "grown-up problems" need to be kept from the children and stay as "grown-up problems."

 

Q: What resources are out there to help parents who need extra support?

LF: In New York State there are many classes available for parents going through divorce or separation. During these certified education classes, parents attend separately and learn different ways to work together. They will learn that there are different ways to speak to one another without accusing or blaming the other parent—blame can be extremely damaging for kids. It's important to know that communication is key during a divorce or separation.

 

Q: Can you suggest some activities/programs children and parents can do together to reduce their stress during a divorce or separation?

LF: Mediation is great at helping parents learn to communicate. During mediation sessions, parents meet with a trained facilitator who helps them navigate the often-turbulent waters of divorce and separation. It also empowers parents by giving them tools to help them work together in the future because, in reality, divorce is just a step in a family's transition. Parents will have to work together for the entire lives of their children—through birthdays, graduations, weddings, etc. 

 

Q: How can parents monitor the stress level of their child during a separation or divorce?

LF: During a divorce or separation, it is so important to be emotionally in-touch with your children. Spend as much time with your children as you can. Check to see if you notice any changes in behavior. There are also many professionals you can speak with, including your child’s pediatrician. There are a lot of organizations ready to help families going through divorce and separation. On the legal side, the NYC Bar Association and inMotion are available to help families.

 

Lesley Friedland is executive director of FamilyKind, a nonprofit organization in New York City that provides information and support services to families experiencing separation and divorce. Friedland serves on the Family Court Custody and Visitation Advisory Committee and is a member of the New York State Bar Association, New York Women’s Bar Association, New York State Council of Divorce Mediators, and Association of Family and Conciliation Courts. She graduated with a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and a JD from Antioch School of Law.

 


Did you find this helpful?

Get more useful parenting info weekly
Sign-up for newsletter


More News & Tips: Services Articles

Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF
How to Soothe a Camera-Shy Child
10 Things to Do if Your Pet is Lost
Survey Shows Strong Tie Between Physical and Digital Security Risks
Ask the Expert: Do You Recommend Mediation for Divorcing Parents of a Child with Special Needs?

Be a good fellow parent and share this with a friend who would be interested
Email Friend

Local News & Tips: Services Sponsors


NYU Silver School of Social Work at Sarah Lawrence College
45 Wrexham Road
Bronxville, NY
914-395-3069
Change your weekend, start your career at NYU Silv...

The Hagedorn Little Village School, Jack Joel Center for Special Children
750 Hicksville Road
Seaford, NY
516-520-6000
The Hagedorn Little Village School, Jack Joel Cent...

Bricks 4 Kidz (TM)/Western South Shore
516-662-2484
At Bricks 4 Kidz®, we believe it’s important to ta...

Tumble - Bee Gymnastics and Fitness
401 Market St., Nanuet Mall South
Nanuet, NY
845-623-2553
Tumble Bee Gymnastics is more than just tumbling. ...
Wood Kingdom
111 Milbar Blvd.
Farmingdale, NY
631-845-3804
...
See Our News & Tips: Services Directory

local zones

Nassau

Nassau cont.

Suffolk

Suffolk cont.

Westchester

Westchester cont.

Fairfield

Rockland

Rockland cont.

Queens

Queens cont.

Brooklyn

Brooklyn cont.

Manhattan

Copyright 2015 NY Metro Parents Magazine Site Design: THE VOICE