I need advice to deal with my son

Melanie - posted on 11/21/2009 ( 7 moms have responded )

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My three and a half year old son hasn't been sleeping good at night since his dad and I got divorced. He is blaming himself for it. He also says that he is afraid of his room. He also won't listen to me when I tell him to do something. Help Needed.

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Melanie - posted on 11/22/2009

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Thank you all who replied to my comment. I will try these different ideas and see if they help. Thank you all very much again.

Kate - posted on 11/21/2009

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Hi Melanie. When I got divorced I took my 2 year old to Mothercare World (baby homestore in the UK) and let him choose his own comforters. He picked out his own night light and a HUGE winnie the pooh pillow. He slept far better thinking that he was a 'big' boy that had chosen everything himself. Hope this helps x

ps/ He only gave up the winnie the ppoh pillow about 4 years later!! lol x

Brandi - posted on 11/21/2009

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I went through this same thing when my parents divorced (i was 4 and we moved twice in one year) My mom initially moved in with her parents *which i was VERY familiar with and had no problems there* but when she got us an apt. I had my own room and i would SCREAM every night. I don't remember a lot about it, but I do remember that i was SCARED of what I don't know. Just be really reassuring and comforting. Sit in his bed with him (don't let him in yours) until he feels more comfortable with the whole situation. Make sure you really emphasize that it isn't his fault and that it had absolutely nothing to do with him. Give him time, he will become his regular self again before you know it. I know I did over time. Once he gets used to whatever his new routine is he should be fine. Let him know you understand that it's hard for him and that you will ALWAYS be there for him NO MATTER WHAT! Good luck. One of my favorite quotes EVER is "This, too, shall pass" Nothing lasts forever and if you take life one day at a time and get through each day, it wont be long before you look back on the harder times of your life with fondness knowing that THOSE are the days that made you stronger. THOSE are the days that make you truly appreciate all the good days you have had, have, and will have for the rest of your life. Without challenges and hardships, we can't really be grateful for any of the good stuff. hang in there. You'll make it and so will your son.

Nikki - posted on 11/21/2009

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Did the divorce end on friendly terms? If so is dad around? If he is near by maybe he can help this transition. And as hard as it may be, unless there was a deeper reason for the split such as abuse or something equally bad, I would recommend you try to give him some one to one time with each of you and a few things together. If he can see you guys can still be friends it may help ease his problems. My friend went through something similar with her ex, and once they showed their 2 kids they could be friends, it got better. There are a TON of great books on split families to help as well. This web article is fantastic: http://extension.missouri.edu/publicatio... And some books that are wonderful include:

Owl Babies. A great story for children who are having problems with separation anxiety.
I Love You All the Time. Jessica Hirschman, Jennifer Cole et al.
Dinosaurs Divorce By Laurene Krasny Brown and Marc Brown
I Don't Want to Talk About It By Jeanie Franz Ransom
It's Not Your Fault, Koko Bear By Vicki Lansky
Mama and Daddy Bear's Divorce By Cornelia Maude Spelman

I wish you the best of luck through this very hard time and transition.

Jaime - posted on 11/21/2009

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For a child that had a very consistent life up until a divorce, it can be very upsetting. Understanding and patience is going to be your tools to get him back to normal! Did you move, because that could be why he is afraid of his room... If not, was daddy bed time involved? Also was daddy rule keeper like most? If so, your job has gotten harder, because you are going to fill his shoes! An unwavering attitude, and reassuring positive attitude might help! It is tough for everyone involved, but single moms have double duty, and can never show it! You will get the hang of it, and so will he.

If it is taking a long time for him to get settled, you could seek professional help. child psycologists are trained to deal with situations like this one, and could be invaluable! Good luck!!!

Jade - posted on 11/21/2009

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I had somewhat of the same problem when my husband deployed. My two and a half year old daughter wouldnt sleep for a while and was always scared to go anywhere and eventually she ended up sleeping in my room and we both sleep better lol. Just try to give him all the support and reasurance he needs right now and be patient, he will realize its going to be ok

Brittani - posted on 11/21/2009

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I saw that no one else wanted to extend anything so I figured even support could help. My son is nearly three and I am still with his father (just to let you know where I am in my journey as a mom) I would continue to be reassuring with my son that it is not at all his fault and mommy and daddy love him very much. Usually kids act out when they want attention no matter what kind of attention it is. It may not be all bad to let him feel safe with you until he is adjusted well and can reapproach his room. I hope this is helpful, best of luck!

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