When children don’t want to visit

When children don’t want to visit

When children don’t want to visit
How do you minimise the traumatic impact of divorce on your children? Being separated, especially when there is a child involved, is never easy. The mental trauma that children go through during the divorce process can have abiding effects on their well-being The situation can be made worse when a child does not want to visit one parent, usually leading to strife or even misunderstandings between the parents. Instead of fighting about it, the first thing to realise is that both the parents have to do what is best for the child. The second is to try to get to the root of the problem and try to find some way out of the situation.

Start by listening
Before going too far, it is essential to understand that this is about the child or children. So, it is vital that you start seeing things from their point of view. Listening without assigning blame, threatening the child or offering incentives for them to visit the other parent is vital. To get to the bottom of any potential issues, start by asking some simple questions.

Ask the child why they do not want to visit, what their last visit was like, and any potential points of stress came up on their previous visit. Remember seeing things from their point of view will help narrow down the potential reasons why they would not like to go.

Keep in mind that if there is some fear, the child may give you unreasonable answers that either helps them obscure the truth, protect the other parent or hide something from you. Listening and asking the right question will help you to understand what is going on quickly.

Ask them for their suggestions
Although the child may not have the best solutions, it is always best to involve them in getting to the root of the problem. So in addition to asking them the questions above, it is also a good idea to ask them what they would like and what potential actions need to be taken. This is so that when at last you find a solution and they agree to visit the other parent, they feel as if they own or share in the decision instead of being forced into it.

Look into yourself and your partner/co-parent
When asking why the child does not want to leave, some things may crop up, and you may not like some of these things. It is always best to understand that the child may not be assigned blame, but if you asked the right questions, they are just telling you as it is.

It is not a judgement on either of you, instead areas where both of you can work on to improve to ensure your child has a better experience the next time they visit either of you.

It is ok to worry
It is ok to worry when your child does not want to visit either you or your ex. The only important thing to remember is that you never blame the child. In almost all cases, the child had nothing to do with why they are living with just one of you. Keeping the needs of the child first and working to eliminate any pain points through dialogue and proactive action is best.


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