As a divorcing parent, you have probably heard that you should prioritize your children’s best interests. You should, but it is not as black and white as it seems.
If you have traveled by plane, you will have heard the safety briefing where the crew tells you that in the event of an emergency, you should put your oxygen mask on before helping your child with theirs. They do this because many parents tend to put their children first to their own detriment.
Looking after yourself leaves you better able to help your kids
While divorce is not an emergency per se, it is a traumatic event in a child’s life. Your children will need you to be in as good a state as possible to support them through the next few months. Here are some ways to practice self-care:
Accept offers of support
If friends and family rally around to offer support, take them up on their offers. Allowing your mom to pick the kids up from school or your friend to grab you some supplies while they are at the grocery store frees up time you could probably use right now.
Add some fun to your life
Getting divorced might feel like the end of the world, but it isn’t. Make a date with friends who make you laugh. Take the dogs to the park to play fetch. Soak in a hot bath for an hour. It does not matter what – just do something that reminds you life is not all bad.
Finally, get legal help to ease you through the complexities of the divorce process. Having someone on your side who understands how it works will remove much of the stress.