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Children with no siblings might struggle with a divorce

Many people think that being an only child is wonderful since that child gets all the attention. Only children do have some challenges to face. One of these is that they don't have any other children in the home to talk to. When an only child's parents decide to end the marriage, the child can feel lonely.

If you have an only child, there are ways that you can help him or her to cope with the divorce. This might help to make the situation a bit more understandable and a little less stressful for your child. Here are some tips for you to consider:

Keep things consistent

Try to keep your child's routine consistent. This might be a bit of a challenge as you move to a two-home life for your child. You and your ex should discuss ways that you can work together to keep the child's life moving in the same direction as it was when you were still together.

Reinforce parental relationships

You and your ex are still your child's parents. No matter how difficult the divorce or what led to it, you will both still have to communicate and work together for your child. It might be best for you and your ex to discuss the divorce together with your child, but don't go into the dirty details about the divorce. Instead, keep things simple and discuss things in an age-appropriate manner. Make it clear that your child doesn't have to choose between parents and that you both love him or her very much.

Encourage other relationships

Your child should have relationships with other children. This can help him or her to focus on being a child instead of having to worry about the adult matters of the divorce. Depending on the custody and visitation schedule, you and your ex might have to work together to schedule play dates or time for your children to play with other children.

Let others know

Divorce can impact every aspect of an only child's life. Let the other adults who are involved in your child's life know what is going on at home. Teachers and leaders for extracurricular activities should know so that they can help your child work through the issues they might be facing. In some cases, your child might feel comfortable discussing his or her feelings with a trusted adult who isn't involved in the divorce. This could make the transition easier.

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Lorrie J. Zahodnic

"I will hold you up until you can stand on your own two feet."

Lorrie J. Zahodnic, P.C. has provided skilled and compassionate legal guidance to Michiganders in family law matters for over 20 years.

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