How can I cope with not seeing my child after a separation?

Losing daily contact with your child can feel devastating. Going from being with your children all the time to limited visits will be a big adjustment. You might feel angry, upset and helpless, especially at the beginning. You may even feel a sense of grief or loss. That’s OK.

Try to remember that it won’t feel this difficult forever, and there are things that can help you feel better.   

Acknowledge how you feel

Acknowledge and recognise your emotions. They might include loss, guilt, relief, injustice, anger or loneliness. Allowing yourself to feel these emotions is part of the healing process. Don’t judge how you feel.  

Some things that might help include:  

  • Be kind. Treat yourself the way you would treat a friend if they told you about their struggles.   
  • Talk to someone. This could be a friend, relative or a professional like a counsellor or GP. Opening up to someone you trust may help to ease the emotional burden, even if it doesn’t change your situation. 
  • Give yourself time to adjust, grieve, and to come to terms with the things you can’t change. You will need time to process all your emotions and to make peace with your different life and routine.  

Take positive action  

Focus on what you are able to doYou might want to arrange to go on a course to help reinstate contact. Sometimes the court will suggest this. That might include guidance on anger management or a course for separated parents.   

  • Make plans for when you’ll see your child. Think about what you can do together.  
  • Try to keep a positive relationship with your ex-partner. This will make it less stressful for you and your child.  
  • Focus on your wellbeing and try to stay fit and healthy. Keeping your mind and body healthy will help you be a better parent to your children.  
  • Make plans and spend time on things you enjoy. Anything that will help your mental, emotional or physical wellbeing is a great way to fill your time 
Go back

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