Being a divorced dad isn’t easy. You are now a single parent. You no longer have another parent to lean on. When the kids are with you, they are really with you. That’s the tough part. But it’s also the great part. You have not only the responsibility, but the opportunity, to develop a loving and lasting relationship with the most important people in your life – your children.
Here are five tips to help you become the best dad you can be:
1. Listen attentively.
When your children are talking to you, put down what you are doing, look them in the eye, and actively listen. Show your kids that you care about what they have to say. Let them know that they are important.
2. Attend school conferences, open-houses, and functions.
School is a big part of your children’s lives. Going to school conferences, open-houses, and other functions shows your kids that their education is important to you.
3. Learn what interests your child, and become interested in it, too.
Sharing a common interest is a great way to build a strong bond. It gives you something fun to talk about, and to do together. But many dads insist that their sons and daughters participate in activities that the dad likes, even after it is clear that the child is not particularly interested. This can lead to stress and conflict. Try doing things differently. Find out what your child is interested in, and become interested in it, too.
4. Create memories.
You don’t have to take your kids on an African Safari. Creating memories can be simple and easy. The most precious gift you can give your children is your time. So, set aside some time to be with them on a regular basis. Look for fun activities . . . A hike in the woods. A bike ride. Playing catch. A game of bowling. An evening playing Monopoly. These are the types of things that create memories your sons and daughters will remember for a lifetime.
5. Tell your children you love them.
Don’t leave it unsaid. Don’t make your children wonder. Don't assume they know. Tell them you love them – and do it often.
Gary Frank has represented dads in divorce, custody, and parenting-time cases for over 30 years, and is a strong advocate for fathers’ rights. Mr. Frank is an expert courtroom litigator, as well as a mediator, and a former Superior Court Judge Pro Tem. If you are in need of a consultation regarding divorce, child custody, parenting-time, or any other area of Family Law, call us today at 602-383-3610; or contact us by email through our website at www.garyfranklaw.com. We're always happy to talk to you.