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Ways to Help Teens Cope with Divorce

By Sheryl Rentz on May 16, 2013

Divorce can be an incredibly difficult time for each family member involved. Parents may be faced with not only the loss of a very important relationship, but also the struggle to help the children cope with a sudden upheaval in the family dynamics. When the divorce comes about during a child’s teenage years, the breakup may be particularly overwhelming. Adolescence already involves plenty of developmental changes, and a divorce may add to the confusion and frustration that many teens experience.

The following tips may help you and your teen cope with the transition:

Listen – Allow plenty of time to talk one-on-one with your teen and listen to his or her feelings. Remain calm and understanding, and explain that the divorce is not his or her fault.

Promote a bond with both parents – Do not talk badly about your ex-spouse to avoid creating distrust or loyalty conflicts. It is still important to nurture healthy relationships between your teen and both parents.

Agree on ground rules – Discuss living arrangements and parenting time with your teen to establish a new, reliable routine.

Adapt – Understand what your teen is going through and be willing to adjust to meet his or her needs. Some teens may develop low self-esteem, self-defeating behavior, or act out against one or both parents.

For a free and confidential consultation with the Pennsylvania family law attorneys at the Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz, LLC, please call (610) 645-0100. Our team is experienced at helping families through the difficult process of divorce and can help you understand your legal rights and options.

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