Our Kids: Military Families


1. The month of April is honoring military children. Cheyenne has a great military presence with the Warren AFB and the national guard located here.

2. As a result, fathers and mothers are sent on deployment on a regular basis. Anytime a parent is away from his children for a long period of time it’s hard for everyone. Particularly the kids.

3. I thought while we are honoring military children it would be a great time to share some parenting tips on how parents can help their kids deal with the separation of deployment.

TIPS
1.Take Time to Talk and Listen!
•Talk as a family before, during and after a parent is sent away. I
may sound like a broken record but the best tool parents have is
talking and listening to each other.
• Be willing to share information with your children. The more
uniformed your children are the more they will look for
information from other sources that may not be as reliable.
Remember, to children no news is worse than bad news.
•Encourage your children to share their feelings with you. Help
them express their words through play, drawings, anything that
helps them open up.
• Talking about their feelings about being away from their Mom or
Dad not only helps them relieve their worries, but it helps you
know what they need and how you can help them.

2. Keep the Children in Contact With the Parent Who is Away
• Send letters, e-mails, pictures, etc. as often as you can. The
more connected the children feel the easier it is to deal with the
separation.
• Keep the deployed parent involved in family conversations and
decisions as much as possible.

3.Maintain Family Routine and Discipline
• This is a great time to make children feel they are important to
the family. Share the responsibility and let the children know
you trust them to help instead of feeling all the work is
dumped on them.
• Don’t change your rules or discipline if possible. Children
need consistency and maintaining a routine will not only
help while one parent is gone but will help when the parent
returns.

4. Reassure the Children
• Let your children know their feelings are normal. We all are sad
when someone we care about isn’t around.
• Keep a positive attitude and help the children feel they are safe
and cared for.
• Remind the children this is temporary and the date their parent
will return will come sooner than they think.

5. Take Care of Yourself
• Deployment is a stressful time for the family. Caring for yourself
during this time can help you be a better parent for your children.
• Eat right, Get enough sleep, and exercise.
• Keep others involved and reach out to old and new friends.
• Remind yourself that your doing a good job


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