November 2005 -
A List of Things for Divorced Parents to Be Thankful For
As a single parent, you may have good times and bad times,
but there are always things to be thankful for:
You are your child’s only mom or dad.
It doesn’t matter if there are stepparents in the picture. You are the only
one who can ever fill the role of “mom” or “dad” for your child. It’s a special
gift and one to be grateful for every single day.
You don’t have to live with your ex anymore.
You no longer live in a home where fighting or strained silences are the norm,
and neither does your child. The cloud has lifted and you are free to move forward.
You have time with your child. No matter
how much time you have to spend with your child, you are an important part of
his life. Focus on enjoying the time you do have, instead of feeling bad about
the time you don’t.
You have time to yourself. Because your
child most likely spends some time with the other parent, you have scheduled
time that is child-free. These are blocks of time when you can focus on yourself
and your needs, and recharge your batteries a bit.
You child has every chance to grow up healthy and
happy. You’ve probably read lots of things about how divorce is bad
for children. However, I have always maintained that it is better for a child
to have two happy parents who live in separate houses, than it is to have two
parents who live together in one house and scream, fight, argue and wound each
other. The divorce has affected your child, but he or she is going to have a
happier life now that the storm has passed.
You’re in charge in your own household.
While being a single parent is a lot of responsibility, it is also gives you
ultimate authority in your own home. You don’t have to negotiate or reason with
the other parent about how you want to do things. You can just make the decisions
and run your house by your own rules.
Your child has two parents. Although you
may not always feel positively about your ex and you may believe he or she does
not always make the best choices, your child has the benefit of having two parents
and two homes. Think of all the children in this world who have lost parents
or who never knew them.
Your and your child made it through the divorce.
There were probably times when you wondered if you were going to survive
it, but you both made it through. The worst is behind you and the future is