Friday, June 4, 2010

Your Former Spouse's Questionable Lifestyle

Some of you have a former spouse who is living an immoral or questionable lifestyle. Should you send your kids into this environment for visitation? That's a difficult question.

While you cannot control what goes on in your former spouse's home, you can control your reaction to the situation and the words you say to your children about it. Sometimes children are quick to tell you things that happened at the other parent's house that they know you will disapprove of. Do not prompt your children to tell you these things. That places the children in the middle again, and your role is not that of detective or police.

Your children may come home and say, "We saw some R-rated movies that you didn't want us to see." Here is where you check your own response before blurting out disparaging words against the other parent.

Dr. Bob Barnes recommends that you say something like, "I'm sorry about that. Your dad and I, or your mom and I, have differing opinions on those kinds of things. I'm sorry that happened. Do you want to talk about the movie itself? Let's do that."

Hopefully your former spouse will be open to calmly discuss your concerns, but if this is not possible, do not despair. Even though you can't be with your children at all times, God can and He is. Read the following Bible verse out loud with conviction.

"I know whom I have believed [God!], and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day" (2 Timothy 1:12).

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