Tips for protecting your children from divorce drama

woodsfamily_2010Several years ago,  Tiger Woods’ shining public image as the World’s Number One Gentleman Golfer took some serious hits. While he may no longer has a reputation as the ideal family man, when new broke, he and Elin definitely did few things right.
From the night he crashed his SUV, and throughout the resulting media frenzy, Tiger removed himself from the public eye. He has attempted to keep a personal matter private and has sought professional help. Despite the pressures of the clamoring paparazzi, unsolicited advice, dropped sponsorships and reporters looking for the next big headline, Tiger has chosen to keep his marriage problems out of the media and to protect his children. There have been no inside stories, no private interviews. He hasn’t said a word to anyone beyond a well-worded statement on his web site.
Even though his children are young and can be shielded from the tabloids, divorce drama always has a trickle-down effect. Apparently, Tiger and Elin have realized that feeding the public’s demand for “more,” only leads to additional stress for both Mom and Dad. You don’t have to have a PhD to realize stressed out, emotionally distraught parents have a harder time putting their children needs first.
Although you might not have to deal with a “media frenzy” around your divorce, there’s still something to be learned from Tiger Woods. Keep it private and get support.
• Less Is More
While the rest of the world may be clamoring for details about your divorce, remember you’re not just giving information about your life, but your children’s lives as well. When feelings are strong, saying less is best. You can always decide to say more later. However, you can never take back what you have already said.
Although it can be difficult, maintain your integrity and be discreet about the information you share so children are protected from second hand details.
• Make Sure You Have Support
Sharing your feelings and getting support is healthy. Having a lengthy discussion with the check out clerk at your local supermarket about how your ex did you wrong is not helpful. If you need to talk, seek out a trusted friend who will listen without fueling the fire or a professional who can help you sort through your feelings and weigh your options.
When you feel supported, you are more likely to:
> Be emotionally and physically available for your children
> Be able to help your children manage their stress
> Shield your children from adult concerns and feelings
• Don’t Rush It
At times it may feel like your life is spinning completely out of control. When this happens, you may find yourself reacting to situations instead of responding to them. Keep in mind, most situations don’t require an immediate decision. Despite pressure from outside influences, give yourself the opportunity to think things through rather than making regrettable reactions.
• Limit The Attention You Give to “Divorce Drama”
If you find that you are spending every waking moment thinking about your divorce, it’s time to change how you use your time and energy. Make a commitment to limit the amount of time you spend thinking and talking about divorce related issues. If you find yourself overindulging, make a conscious effort to stop. Change your surroundings by taking a walk or engage yourself in a more constructive activity.