The COVID-19 pandemic has presented significant problems for nearly every sector of the economy and every part of our society. Coronavirus and the restrictions associated with this illness can have an especially large impact on blended families. Understanding some of the possible effects of the coronavirus on divorced and blended families will provide added help in navigating the new normal for parents and children. Here are some of the most common challenges facing blended families during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Living Arrangements and Custody
Balancing the need to reduce the potential risk of coronavirus with the right of parents to see their children after a divorce can be a real challenge, especially if one or both families include individuals at serious risk if they should contract the virus. Finding ways to negotiate these situations to keep all family members as safe as possible can be difficult for parents sharing custody of their children in the state of California.
Parents may feel that their rights to custody or visitation are being disregarded because of unfounded fears about the transmission of COVID-19. On the other side of the equation, some parents may be worried about the added risk that the virus poses to certain vulnerable members of their family. Finding a mutually beneficial way to balance health concerns and the rights of custodial and non-custodial parents to spend time with children can be difficult. It is important to consider the matter from the perspective of the other parent to find the right solution for your blended family.
In areas where COVID-19 stay-at-home orders are in place, children and adults alike may find it difficult to achieve a measure of privacy inside or outside your home. This can be especially problematic for newly blended families without clear-cut boundaries and spaces for each member to call his or her own. The ability to retreat from social interactions within the family is of critical importance in maintaining good relationships and preserving the emotional health of parents and children.
Experts recommend assigning each individual an area to which they can escape and enjoy some privacy. This can be anywhere indoors or outdoors on your property that the adult or child feels comfortable. When discussions or interactions become too intense or when one of you just needs a break, retreating to your own personal safe space is a great way to promote a healthier and happier blended family now and when the pandemic restrictions are relaxed. A little time apart can make time spent together even better for your entire family.
The dramatic change in daily routines and fears about the coronavirus have had an impact on almost every family in California and across the United States. The added stress can make even minor conflicts feel like major issues. It is important for you and your entire family to make allowances for this stress and to accept that there will be some added friction and overreaction by adults and children during this difficult time. This can help you and your blended family to weather the current storm and to promote the healthiest relationships now and in the future.