Search This Blog

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

RESOLVED: I Will SHARE Children & DIVIDE Property

How's that for a New Year's resolution to start the new decade?!

Welcome to the Hannah's House Blog! This resolution blog is our first and we hope to see you here often. We will focus on issues of concern for 2 home kids...that is children who go back and forth between two homes, usually Mom's and Dad's. Our primary goal is to look at this from the perspective of the child. We will talk about all kinds of topics and situations and, hopefully, include ideas for children of all ages. So, on we go to our first blog, which is about sharing children and dividing property.

This time of year is always a challenge for 2 home kids going back and forth between Mom's house and Dad's house. Mom and Dad are fighting for THE HOLIDAY or EQUAL TIME or DAILY CONTACT and, if you ask the kids what they like...what they want...what they look forward to...? Honestly? It's probably going to be the presents/time in both homes, whatever Mom and Dad are doing. It's no fun when parents fight over you, compete for the #1 spot, and, in general, act like idiots. Kids don't really care when it happens, as long as it does and as long as it is close enough to count. They just don't want to go back to school next Monday with the dismal reality that the entire winter break was spent bouncing back and forth either metaphorically or physically between two supposed grown-ups acting like spoiled...oh...I dunno...children?

Some parents approach their 2 home kids as if they were dividing property or proceeds from the sale of property. Everyone would probably agree that the transfer of a deed probably is a big deal in terms of doing it on 12/31/09 VS 01/01/10. But not so much the case when you are talking about sharing a special family meal with your 2 home kid. Making sure it is EQUAL certainly is important when you are splitting money between 2 people who each have a claim to it, but sharing kid time with the other parent...come can do can let go of that 50/50 mentality just for a little while. Go ahead, put down the calculator or the chain saw or whatever you are using to get the kids divided exactly in two. By the way, whatever your timeshare/percentage is...let it go! (I know that if you don't have 50/50 that is exactly what some of you will focus on.)

And I know that some of you are saying right now..."but you don't understand! My situation is special! It's different for me!" The truth is, all families are different from one another. So you're right-you probably are special. And what matters is that each one of our children wants to be seen, heard, loved and accepted. The surroundings, the details, the circumstances are not what matters most to a child. It's the true presence, at every level, of a parent in the moment who can see, hear, love and accept. Try it. For the sake of your child, try it.

Your kids will thank you for the peace you create for everyone when you stop the battle. Take a deep breath and take the risk of just being with your children for whatever time you have. Don't fight it. Embrace what is, not what you wish for. Be thankful. Be loving. Just be...with your child. St Augustin got it right, "Peace in society depends on peace in the family." Let's do that for New Year's 2010. Let's be at peace in our family.