How do I handle the transition?

by Christina
(Alabama)

Me and my husband have been married for 6 yrs and for the past year he has not been able to work due to medical problems so he has been watching the kids while I've worked. The past 3yrs our marriage has faded. On top of contanstly lying, he's admitted to doing drugs and writing bad checks on a closed account. Now he is in jail and we are getting divorced. My son is too little to understand but it is killing my 4yr old daughter. She has had a major attitude towards everything and has been going to the bathroom on the floor and not on accident. I know she wanting the extra attention, whether positive or negative, because of whats going on but how do I show her that I love her and that everything is going to be ok. The thing is, she does this only when we are at the house. Not when we are out, like at church, the store, etc. Please help! I don't need to have my daughter revert backwards and continue to act like my 2yr old son.

Comments for How do I handle the transition?

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Child Regression
by: Sara Says

I am so sorry for your pain and difficult situation. You must be heartbroken.

Given that your daughter is not having a consistent problem with the wetting, you are likely right. She is doing this for attention, possibly to exercise some control in a situation where she feels no control, and/or to express anger/grief. It is a good idea to have a discussion about your daughter's change in behavior, just to be sure nothing is going on medically.

Regressing during traumatic situations is normal. Lots of love, attention, and patience are the best solutions. When she wets, just direct her to go change, and to clean up her mess. Give no more attention to the situation. Look for ways to increase her feeling of control. Things like..."Do you want peas or carrots today?" "Do you want to brush your teeth first, or take a bath first." The more choice you can give her, the better.

Remember to breathe, and know this will pass.

God bless and good luck!

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