Search

How Do I Handle Discipline During Quarantine as a Divorced Dad?

Posted on in Divorce Issues

Dad's divorce lawyersThe coronavirus pandemic has affected many families’ lives, and it looks like it will continue to do so as parents and children begin to go back to school in the fall. In some cases, the adjustments families have made as children have stayed home from school and parents have worked from home or suffered job losses have thrown the usual rules and routines into chaos. Because of this, maintaining consistency when it comes to discipline has been a concern for many parents. 

Divorced dads sometimes struggle to  figure out how to handle discipline of their children and maintain a balance between work, life, and parenting, and this was true even before the COVID-19 crisis became a factor. Adjusting to living in two homes can be difficult for children, and even when dads do their best to stay consistent, children can act out or push their boundaries. The additional stresses and anxieties that children are currently experiencing can make these issues even worse. Being cooped up at home and unable to spend time with friends and extended family members is likely to lead to increased behavioral issues for children, and dads will want to understand how they can provide the appropriate level of discipline while working to meet their kids’ needs.

Here are a few tips for you can discipline your children effectively while addressing concerns related to the pandemic:

  • Stick to regular routines - It’s understandable if you’ve been lax about following schedules for meals, bedtimes, or other activities over the last few months. Routines often change when children are out of school during the summer, and quarantine restrictions have made it even more difficult to maintain consistency. However, now that school is starting up again, you will likely want to introduce more structure. Following regular schedules will help everyone get enough nutrition and sleep while also ensuring that schoolwork is completed on time.
  • Make rules and follow them - You may have also relaxed some of the rules that your kids are required to follow, such as the amount of screen time they should have each day. As you begin to impose more order, you should be sure everyone understands what is allowed and when, as well as the consequences for breaking these rules. By following rules and restrictions and avoiding making exceptions, you can provide a consistent environment for your children that will help them thrive.
  • Avoid comparisons with the other parent - You’re probably going to hear some objections from your kids about the rules and structure you impose on their lives, and they may tell you that their mom lets them do things that you don’t allow or handles discipline differently. While you will probably want to maintain some consistency between your two households, you should also make sure your kids understand that they are required to follow your rules when they are with you. It’s also best to avoid attempting to compensate for your ex’s actions, such as making allowances for a child’s bad behavior because you feel that their mom’s discipline was too harsh. Instead, focus on doing the best thing for your kids when they are with you.
  • Be calm and offer comfort - You’re probably feeling your own stresses and anxieties right now, but you’ll want to do everything you can to avoid getting angry at your kids or getting in arguments with them. If necessary, you can practice calming techniques to address stress and frustration, and you can help your kids do the same if they’re struggling with strong emotions. Whatever you do, you’ll want to be a source of love and comfort, and even when you’re disciplining your kids, you can remind them that you love them and want what’s best for them.

Being a divorced parent isn’t easy, especially during a pandemic. Following these tips can help you make the best of a difficult situation. Iif you need to address legal issues related to child custody or parenting time, you’ll want to work with an experienced divorce lawyer who can make sure your rights and your children’s best interests are protected.

 

Sources:

https://www.fatherly.com/parenting/kids-quarantine-acting-out/

https://www.verywellfamily.com/parenting-mistakes-after-divorce-4084363

https://www.parents.com/parenting/divorce/coping/discipline-after-divorce/

Back to Top