Here are some tips to help you to help your children

  1. Don’t bad mouth the other parent. If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all.
  2. Don't use your children to get back at each other.
  3. Don’t ask them to make decisions about where they live or how they spend their time between you. Take into account their views but make the decisions yourselves.
  4. Don’t use your children as messengers between you.
  5. Don’t assume they are coping well just because they are carrying on as normal. Look out for any warning signs or behaviour change.
  6. Don’t argue in front of your children.
  7. Do try to agree between you what you will say to your children so they hear the same from both of you.
  8. Do reassure them that it is not their fault and that you both love them.
  9. Do be as honest as appropriate about the situation and as clear as possible about future arrangements.
  10. Do offer them someone independent they can talk to about their feelings. (Often schools will be able to help.)
  11. Do all you can to allow the children to continue a good relationship with both parents, even if it hurts you to do so.
  12. Do look after yourself and keep yourself well, physically, emotionally and mentally.
  13. Do look to the long term. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

And most important of all, LOVE them, LOVE them, LOVE them.

Polly Gavins runs Abingdon Family Mediation, a mediation service that
aims to provide a practical and effective mediation process that is delivered with kindness, respect and understanding.

If you would like to book in a confidential one to one meeting, call Polly on 0770 651 3496 or email