We may no longer be married but I will always be their mother. It is what it is unfortunately, but that being said, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Talking about me
We were once married and there is no denying that. Now that that has ended it changes our feelings about one another naturally. But the same can’t be said for our children. They still love us both and are also dealing with the loss of their original family unit.
When talking about me please follow the same rules I tell our children. Always think before you speak about anyone else and that includes me. I was once a suitable mate and now to be spoken of in a degrading or derogatory tone confuses the same children we both still love.
Take out your negative words towards me in a more productive fashion. Maybe try journaling or therapy sessions. The children will appreciate that and learn more from that then hearing your negative words about their mother. This family unit was once built on a foundation of love and mutual respect. The structure of the family unit may have changed but the mutual respect still must remain for everyone’s benefit.
Honoring Special Days
Teaching children to gift is a life long skill. Taking a moment to show appreciation for a family member’s birthday, Christmas, or other special day teaches children to acknowledge a loved one’s role in their life and says you are special to me. It doesn’t even require any shopping. Maybe they just need help drawing a picture or writing a note. The point is that they learn to honor a special person. Trying to negate the recognition of a special day because your relationship with that person has changed is not fair to our children. I may not be your wife any longer but if they want to honor my birthday or Mother’s Day please help with the crayons or to wrap the art they created. I will always help them to honor you regardless of our relationship status and this also is another display of mutual respect.
Dealing with significant others and step parents
Introducing new people and relationships into our children’s lives is hard. Just because this person was your choice doesn’t mean it would have also been our children’s choice. So to expect them to welcome this person into their already very changed world with open arms is asking a lot. Respect and acceptance will take time. Their original family unit didn’t develop overnight and to expect the same for the formation of a new family unit is asking a lot. I am not saying that there will never be positive relationship. I am just asking you to be patient with their hearts.
They belong to us
I know I am not perfect as you already know. That being said I hope I can accept with grace any suggestions you would have for me as well. These are and will always be our children. They came from a place of love and I truly believe they are made up of the best parts of each of us. And the best parts of each of us is what they need to see when parenting them together.
Their forever, Mother.