Child custody disputes are known to be traumatic for kids, but they are often just as stressful for the adults involved. This is especially true for parents who may not receive primary custody and then find themselves unable to see their kids regularly--or even at all. This is not as uncommon as you might think, but even if you have not seen your child in years, it is not too late to reconnect with them.
This is not to say, however, that doing so might not be a challenge. Time goes by fast when a kid is growing up, and if you want to reestablish a meaningful relationship, you should make your efforts deliberate. The following tips can help you avoid faux pas and reclaim your place in your child's life.
Resist empty gifting
Many parents who reconnect with their kids find it tempting to win back their favor by showering them with gifts instead of attention. While making up for missed birthdays and holidays might be nice, empty gift-giving is a ploy that your kid will eventually grow tired of. Even worse is the probability that they will eventually see through it, too.
Make gradual efforts
It is important not to show up in your child’s life and act as though nothing has happened. You will need to reconnect gradually and get to know your kid again. This means that your efforts should be paced and conscientious. There is no need to dive right in if you plan to maintain your presence in his or her life.
Invest in quality time
According to the Huffington Post, there are several ways you can create quality time with your kid. Going on dates to movies, playing games together and planning road trips are just a few of the recommended ways to invest time in your child. These activities are great for reestablishing bonds, too, by creating a shared experience.