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Are You Parenting Under the Influence of Anger?

When a once loving couple takes a negative approach to divorce, they become bitter, revenge-seeking enemies making anger inevitable and highly toxic. To quote the words of Buddha – “Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person (your ex) to die.”

Because of the complexity of divorce, it can often bring out the very best or the very worst in each person. If you have experienced divorce, then you understand how complicated and emotionally challenging it can be. The life and the people that you and your children once loved completely changed. Dealing with change is difficult for the average person, but dealing with the changes brought on by divorce can be extremely difficult. Divorce will extract all kinds of emotions from everyone involved – you, your ex-spouse, your children, both sides of the family and mutual friends. However, it is you and your ex-spouse that will experience the greatest emotional challenges.

In order to avoid running the risk of anger taking over your new life and negatively influencing you and the type of parent you are to your children, you will need to go through the healing process, Similar to a death, grieving involves a period of mourning – regardless of who instigated the divorce. The grieving process for divorce is quite similar that of a death; however, from my experience, dealing with the aftermath of divorce seems a lot more painful!

When someone passes away and we get through the initial shock and grieving, as time goes on, we eventually learn to accept the reality that the person is gone from our lives. So we learn to move on and make new plans without having to consider their needs. However, when it comes to divorce, both people are still very much alive and responsible for getting along in order to peacefully co-parent their children together.

Another very common struggle many divorced moms have is to come to the realization that they are no longer their ex-husband’s wife. Therefore, you are no longer responsible for keeping him informed on every upcoming event in your child’s life – including school trips, doctor appointments, birthdays, etc. And, more importantly, every time he forgets these events and you’re the one having to console your tearful, disappointed child, try your best to avoid the temptation to let your anger get the best of you. Each co-parent must take responsibility for their actions and non-actions. Even if it is difficult to watch your child’s heart break right in front of you. Take it from me, as your children grow older and begin to understand the world around them, they'll recognize which parent has made a conscious effort to always be there for them and which one has not!

The very best thing you can do for yourself and for your child is to be the unconditionally-loving, happy and peaceful parent your child needs you to be. This will ensure that all involved can effectively heal from the pain of divorce. And don’t even think about trying to get through the pain without healing your emotional-wounded soul. Otherwise, you WILL fall victim to becoming the angry divorced mom who is parenting under the influence of anger. Believe me... nothing good will come out of that!

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