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Kelley, Licensed Clinical Social Worker
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1018
Experience:  BSW, MSW, LCSW
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My ex-husband and I have a good co-parenting relationship

Customer Question

My ex-husband and I have a good co-parenting relationship and a custody agreement that has our daughter spending 2/3 of her time with me and 1/3 with him. There is a long backstory - but he has remarried, we all get along and for the most part, things are good. However, all too often, my daughter (age 10) seems insecure when coming back from her visits. His new life involves a lot of new people and new experiences for her - not necessarily a bad thing, but I do think she is overwhelmed. When she comes home, or talks to me on the phone, her conversations with me are all about, " I miss you," and about the "boring" things we do in our daily life - favorite tv shows, routines, etc.... I often worry that she worries about me....but lately I suspect that she is asking me those things because they provide the "constant" in her life. What are your thoughts? I talk to her about the experiences she has and I think I am being supportive...I am an educator and know kids well, but I worry...
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Kelley replied 7 years ago.

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First off good for you for working through I'm sure a lot of hurt to get to the point where you can co-parent and do what is best for your child. Not everyone can do that and it takes a lot of work to get to that point. I would say yes that your daughters behavior is normal. The ideal relationship is that a child lives at home with both parents and does not have to go back and forth between houses, but as we know that is not the "norm" anymore. So along with that does come some adjustment. Since she is with you most of the time she probably misses you while she is gone. I would continue to reasure her that you are okay and that while you miss her and enjoy being with her that her dad misses her and enjoys being with her and that you are happy that she gets to be with her dad as well and that you are just fine. I would continue to do what you do and talk to her about the experiences she is having at her dads and talk about how great it is that she gets to do those things with him. I would also suggest talking to her father to make sure that her "constent" things in her life are still assessable at his house. So if you watch a tv show together every week that when she is at his house that she can still watch it and even watch it with him. Or if she really enjoys a certain routine that it can at least be modified somewhat into their house as well. This may make her feel a little more secure and have a contant routine. If she has not seen a counselor in awhile a few sessions just to make sure nothing else is going on with her probably wouldn't hurt especially if she enjoyed the sessions. Please let me know if I can assist anymore!