Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are two of the most emotional
days for divorced parents. Today, let’s concentrate on the dads.
Divorce can trigger highly charged and sensitive feelings.
Whatever the reason for the split, these feelings are very real and painful for
the non-custodial father. He no longer has his children full-time and now has
to deal with the issues of Father’s Day. These dads already feel horrible about
the divorce (failing as a husband and a father), and now they have to manage
the emotions attached to Father’s Day.
Here are a few suggestions on how to survive, find peace and
enjoy celebrating on this day.
If you have your kids
- Plan, Plan, Plan. Depending on the age of the
children, plan nap time, meal time, etc. Plan fun and interactive activities.
Play board games, cook a meal together, take a walk, ride bikes around the
- What about something creative? An art project
that can be hung and remembered by all in your home and/or the kiddos can take
home with them. This is an awesome way to celebrate and create memories of your
day. Think about making this an annual project.
- Take videos and pictures. Capture the moments.
Make a collage or photo album.
If you will see your
kids for part of the day:
- Have a plan for your time together. The time
with your children should be fun and interactive. The suggestions are the same
as above just in a condensed amount of time. Remember to pick up and drop off
your kids on time. This is not the time for anxiety and stress for anyone.
For your time without your children:
- Find other single dads and play a few rounds of
golf, exercise, eat a good meal and just chill. If you are alone, consider
- Celebrate your father or other father figures in
If you don’t see your
- Prepare emotionally, as being without your kids
is extremely heartbreaking. Consider this and prepare for these feelings.
- Plan, plan, plan ahead. Do you like to hike,
bike, or take long drives? Are there movies or TV binge shows you have wanted
to catch up on?
- Write a Father’s Day card or letter to each of
your children individually. Let each of them know how much you love him/her.
Remind him/her of memories both sweet and humorous that you hold near and dear
to your heart. Send them photos that make you smile with each of them.
- Call or Facetime with them. If there are time
zone restraints or other commitments that are had, set up a mutually agreeable
time. Talk about pleasant, loving, humorous times together.
Being divorced on Father’s Day can take an emotional toll on
you. I hope these suggestions help make this day better and start a cycle of
positive memories for and with you and your children.
Jacqui Atcheson is a Certified Divorce Coach ® and Certified Divorce Mediator that specializes in working with her clients starting at the earliest stages of divorce. She helps them get certainty about what they want, control over their future and peace of mind knowing they made the best possible decisions. Her passion for helping others through divorce began as a personal mission in 1979 and became her profession in 1996. Get introduced to her services at: www.betterpathtodivorce.com