How to Navigate Single Fatherhood After a Divorce

A divorce can be difficult for both spouses – especially when you and your spouse have children. The changes in your personal life will build up quickly, but, as a parent, the changes in your children’s lives will concern you even more. The time it will take to finalize the divorce may be quick, so you must adjust quickly. For example, in an uncontested divorce in Pennsylvania, your divorce could be final as soon as 90 days after the date the case was filed and served.

How Will Your Post-Divorce Life Begin?

At the beginning of a divorce, you and your spouse must temporarily agree on where your children will live. For the children’s sake, it’s best to make as few changes in the children’s lives as possible. If you and your spouse intend to divorce, bring your temporary agreement to a family law attorney to protect you and the children.

Both spouses should talk with the children as honestly as possible about what’s going on. Most of all, both of you should make it clear you both love the children. It’s also important to tell them the divorce isn’t their fault. The changes made at the beginning of your divorce may soon evolve into a permanent plan for custody and visitation.

How Will Your New Life Look?

When you were married, you and your wife probably had household and parenting roles. Now, when your children are in your home, all those roles will suddenly be yours. When your children aren’t there, there may be new household tasks you need to learn.

As you wait for the impact of your divorce to settle, you’ll be trying to get accustomed to a new place to live. To make your new apartment feel more like a “home,” find something in the new site that’s easily renovated. For example, according to Proline, almost 95% of people who renovate a home will either partially or fully replace their cabinets. The more you get used to your new household routine, the more relaxed you’ll be able to be when your kids are with you.

How Will Your New Routine Look?

Children of all ages need a measure of structure in their lives. When they’re with you, you’ll be the one to set that structure. Your children need to know there are rules in your home. Be clear to them about what the rules will be – and stick to those rules.

One important ground rule to follow is to speak as positively as possible about your former spouse. Your children may be angry and may talk negatively about their other parents. Let them know they are free to speak their minds. However, your remarks about the other parent should remain positive.

How Will You Care for Yourself?

To be the best possible dad, you must take good care of yourself. With any task you do, your wellness will influence its quality. Give yourself outlets for home recreation – including providing a separate television set for the children. After all, according to Television History, almost every American home owns at least one TV, while about 2/3 of American homes have at least three TVs.

While it’s essential to care for yourself, you still need to be careful some of your habits don’t negatively impact your children. Keep your social media posts about your divorce positive – since your children might read them. If the divorce settlement compels you to pay child support, comply with that obligation, for your children’s sake.

As time passes, your new role as a single dad will evolve, and you and the children will also begin to grow accustomed to their new lives. Take good care of yourself. Work together with your former spouse as cordially as possible. Most of all, keep your children’s best interests on top of your priorities.