Divorce can be hard on teenagers who have to watch their parents go through divorce. But what if your teenager was younger when you divorced and was used to a regular visitation schedule? And now that they’re older, they don’t want to comply with the same schedule? As a parent, there are some things that you must do, and some conversations you must have, and we can help you understand how to work through these issues.
Walking Your Teenager Through Divorce and Visitations
Independence is Okay: Yes, a teenager should have independence. However, just because they have gained a special independence doesn’t mean that they should choose to work the other parent out of their lifestyle. Having two parents involved in their life can be extremely beneficial and not to be forgotten. Your job right now is to parent somebody who doesn’t want to be parented, and talk them through the hard parts.
Be Flexible: There are many things that are essential to a teen’s everyday life, from sports and activities, to friends and jobs. If your visitation schedule is restricting and keeps them from the things they love, you could end up with resentment – which means that you should sit down with them and create a balance in your teen’s life that allows for you to work through everything. You should work to incorporate things into their schedule that allow for their own personal growth.
Minimum Time With Parent: If your teen has a particularly packed schedule, you should at least create minimum time per month that they can spend with the non-custodial parent. Be creative with time sharing and offer to take your child to sports when possible, and be flexible with their ideas, too!
Staying Connected: Many teens in our modern times understand technology so you can maintain a close relationship through texting, calling, and instant messaging. It can be difficult trying to stay connected but this gives you a way to find out about their interests and activities.
The teenage years can be some of the most difficult, for teenagers especially but also parents who have gone through divorce. This is why it is a good idea to stay open to all the possibilities that will help your teenager have the best relationship with both parents!