Will my kids be okay if I leave & get divorced?
Recently, I’ve made it public that I have been going through my divorce. At first there was a lot of resistance personally because I wasn’t sure how vulnerable I could be in the online space. However, it’s important for me to normalize divorce because as entrepreneurs (new or old) we exist outside of the daily to do lists. We have relationships, children, divorces, emotions & everything in between.
As a personal brand & the owner of a marketing company I know how important it is to be authentic while still being open & honest with my audience. The other thing I 100% admit: I am not an expert at divorce. When I get this question in my inbox “are your kids okay?” I don’t have a specific answer……my quick answer is: ask me in twenty years.
Calling in the experts to help guide you with children & divorce.
As we get more and more questions coming in about divorce I want to help you. Our team spent some time on Instagram finding someone who I could connect with knowing that you would too. the need to reach out and find someone who has experience & could support some of you with your healing and moving forward. is the expert and can HELP not only me but so many of you with your questions & healing. I met Jan & Jillian Yuhas on Instagram & felt completely connected to their content and message. When Jan and I had our first zoom meeting I wanted to fly to Chicago with a bottle of champagne and hang out with her (you are all going to want to do the same!). She’s friendly, knowledgeable & makes you feel confident with your decisions.
Who are Jan & Jillian Yuhas?
Growing up in a divorced family themselves, they understand the importance of co-parenting and establishing a new family structure that benefits the welfare of all parties involved. They assist their clients in reaching parenting agreements that are sustainable, diminish conflict through resolution tools, establish healthy boundaries, cultivate healthy relationships, and simplify the divorce process through coaching and/or mediation.
Their passion to help others began at the age of 22 when they became volunteers at the National Runaway Safeline. During their volunteer experience, they helped mediate high-conflict conversations between parent(s) and their teens who ran away from home. They provided compassionate guidance and solutions to the families in order to work through their challenges and unresolved differences prior to the child returning home. Jan and Jillian’s dedication to volunteer work inspired and fueled their interest to want to help others work through their relationship struggles, which lead to their Masters in Marriage & Family Psychology.
What were some of my old beliefs that held me back from moving forward during my divorce?
I made up a lot of rules in my mind when I decided to leave, all of them centered around fear, my fear of the kids not being “okay”.
- I was letting my kids down as a mother and leader
- I would lose clients because I no longer have a “perfect” life
- The kids would have to decide between him and I
- Money – how would I survive on my own
Jan & Jillian Yuhas support us in understanding how we can focus on forward thinking.
To start healing it’s a good idea to switch your focus from what your ex’s new life is like or what your life would be like if you were still married as these will keep you stuck – to imagining the life that you really want. Start a vision board – either old school with magazine cutouts and cardboard or using Pinterest. Add images of hobbies you’d like to learn – painting or photography; find pictures of places you’d like to visit – Tofino, Kelowna..The Great Wall of China, or back home to visit your family. Be sure to include positive affirmations that help to build the foundation to a healthier mindset. Don’t hold back when making this vision board so that it can be authentically you.
Once you have started this process of healing yourself, it’s important to help your children transition and they may now behave differently than what they did before the divorce. But being in tune with your children is vital to how they adapt to their new lifestyle. They will be learning from you and how you handle the divorce that will have the biggest impact on them.
Jan gives us 3 signs that children will show up differently after divorce that you should be aware of as a parent?
1) Showing signs of regression or acting younger than their age might be a sign that they need more love and attention from you.
2) Your child might start secluding themselves from the rest of the family by spending more time alone in their bedroom. If that’s the case it might be a sign that they’re internalizing their feelings which can result in self-blame.
3) If your child shows a reluctance to go to your ex’s home, it could be a sign that they fear being abandoned. Children thrive in environments where there is safety, security, and love.
Jan gives us specific questions to ask your child to check in on their mental health during your divorce.
1) I know this is hard for you. How can I support you during this time?
2) What do you like about having two homes? What do you dislike?
3) What about the divorce is making you feel (child’s emotion)?
4) I understand how that can make you feel (child’s emotion). What would make you feel better?
5) I’m here for you. What do you need?
When should you as a mom reach out to get outside support?
There is no standard length of time that it will take a child to make this major life adjustment. And there is no standard length of time it will take you to make this adjustment. You should consider getting support for your children if you are unable to communicate with them about your own emotions and behaviours. You should also consider seeking support if you find that you can’t fully support them as you are still going through your own emotional healing process.
Getting support is common, and many people go looking during any type of major life transition. It can be so beneficial to the healing process and helps to stabilize your own mental state and return you to a healthy and happy lifestyle. Hiring a trained therapist or counsellor will not only give you the support you need but will also help to guide you in minimizing the stress felt by everyone. Together you can create a detailed plan of action and techniques for healing.
Jan & Jillian are incredible, their blog has dozens of amazing resources for us and everyone who is going through a transition like divorce, seperation or maybe you’ve already GONE through it and have a friend who requires some support.
It’s important that you take care of your mental health so that you can help your kids. And if you feel like progress isn’t being made, ask for help. If you struggle with asking for help – reach out to me and I can connect you with Jan & Jillian.
It takes a lot of courage to ask for help, it takes a lot of courage to leave but I promise my life is the benefits make it so worthwhile.
Find more resources on their website here.
My name is Megan Lockhart and I am the CEO of Hello Life Academy.
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