Saturday, September 21, 2013
Five on Friday
I never thought any of my Five on Friday posts would be about a serious topic. I thought they would always be fun and light topics. But here I am about to write about a very serious topic that has been heavy on my heart lately....Divorce.
I am in no way an expert. I didn't go to school to become a psychologist or counselor. But I do have first hand experience. First, my parents went through an ugly divorce in 1992 when I was 12. Then, my brother went through a divorce in 2003. I saw my two young innocent nieces go through something no kid should have to go through. I was bound and determined to break the cycle. Then I found myself left by my husband for another woman. There I was, going through a divorce in 2007. The one thing I was determined to avoid. Although this was not my choice, I made it my mission to make it as smooth and easy as possible for our son.
I went through DivorceCare at a local church. Now I am helping with the DivorceCare program. For anyone going through a divorce or is divorced, I strongly recommend DivorceCare. I also believe that you cannot fully recovery from a divorce without God. You know the old saying...time heals all wounds. Well, yes you will get better over time and you will heal, but you will be left with scares and baggage. I believe God is the only way to get through a divorce without scares, without baggage.
This past Wednesday, the topic in DivorceCare was about kids and how divorce effects kids. The video we watched discussed several issues that I didn't really have to deal with at the time of my divorce because Bryson was only 2 at the time. Now that he is older, I realize there are several issues we may face or are facing.
ONE The video discussed how many kids feel that the divorce was their fault. Several kids were interviewed, and they stated how they that it was their fault in different ways. Of coarse at 2 Bryson did not think the divorce was his fault. But watching the video made me wonder if he may think that now. I plan on talking to him very soon about the divorce. First I need to make a mental list of everything to discuss. I have to make sure he knows 100% in no way was it is fault.
TWO Don't make promises you can't keep. Although I do not make promises I can't keep, we do have to deal with this issue. Bryson's dad is constantly making promises he doesn't keep. He's told him he would take him to Disney and didn't. He told him he would take him to a particular movie and he didn't. The list could go on and on. The noncustodial parent is usually the one that makes promises they can't keep. We don't make it a point to bring up these broken promises to Bryson. I think he is starting to catch on. I'll be here, ready to talk about it when he brings it up.
THREE Don't say anything negative about the other parent. This isn't an issue for us. Through all the divorces I've seen, I know how damaging this can be. I vowed to never say anything negative to Bryson about his dad. For the most part this has been easy, but there have been a few times that I really had to exert control over my mouth.
FOUR Every change is a stressor. This also wasn't a big issue for us. Bryson didn't really have any changes after the divorce other than going to his dad's on the weekend. I have seen others that have been through many changes, such as a new place to live, a new school, etc. If possible, try to keep the changes to a minimum.
FIVE Don't share all the details with your kids. This also wasn't a issue for us since Bryson was just 2, but I wouldn't share the details with him even if he was older. I would also like to add that it doesn't matter how old the children are. DON'T SHARE. Just recently, my parent in laws went through a divorce after a 35 year marriage. Sharing too many details even with adult children can cause damage. DON'T SHARE. Just recently, Bryson asked me why his parents were divorced. I was caught off guard. I didn't know what to say. I really didn't like my answer. I need to rediscuss with him. I don't want to tell him all the details of how his dad had an affair. But I also don't want to leave him with he impression that we just got divorce because we couldn't get along. I don't want him to have that kind of perception about divorce.
Like I said, I never intended to write about this. If God laid this on my heart, it's for a reason. Maybe someone needs to read this. Maybe someone is going through some of these things. Maybe someone needs someone else to talk to. I am more than happy to help.
On a lighter note, HAPPY WEEKEND.