[Y]oung children of divorce can suffer from a lack of identity. And society can exacerbate that conflict with asking, not intending harm, embarrassing questions that not only make a blended family uncomfortable, but create even more angst for the child of divorced parents.
After a divorce, a child must not only adjust to new surroundings, but how people respond to well-meaning friends who ask questions about the new situation.
I Have Two Homes
According to Colleen LeMaire, step-parenting expert and author of the book, I Have Two Homes, lists several questions that she frequently finds herself answering.
What’s it like to be a stepmom? Does the Ex like you? Do you like your stepdaughter? Don’t you want your own kids? What does your visitation schedule look like? How does child support work?
LeMaire says she has no problems with these questions, as she is an adult and can handle them.
However, there is one question many direct at her step-daughter, one that she says, “makes me boil with anger and my claws of defense come out.”
When Do You Go Home?
While she admits it’s mostly asked out of innocent curiosity, it puts the child on the spot, and makes her think of one of her ‘homes’ being just that, and the other parent’s residence just a place she ‘visits.’ Non-custodial parents are still parents who strive to give their children a loving home, and because of limited time, that home becomes more important.
LaMaire says the home she shares with her husband and step-daughter has the daughter’s own room. The daughter also has her own dresser filled with her clothes, her own toothbrush in the bathroom, and the pantry is filled with her favorite snacks.
But if you, as the non-custodial parent, take those steps to make the step-daughter’s time as comfortable as possible, with the permanent ‘homey-touches’ that goes a long way in making that room feel like it’s the child’s place for privacy and solace, then that will make them more comfortable, and ease the angst the next time the family hears, ‘that question.’
After all, blended kids have two homes–and one of them is right here with you.
How do you or your kids deal with the question of “Where do they live? When do they go home?”
Featured image from www.DollarPhotoClub.com.