It’s weekend exchange time again and we’ll be having my bonus kiddos for this Memorial weekend!
Parents (or stepparents) that have children in two homes understandably have some questions after not seeing their kiddos for awhile. The question is what to expect from them over the weekend…
Are they going to come over happy with new stories to share? Apprehensive after not seeing you for a while? Overly helpful because they feel they need to overcompensate for what they heard about you? Telling you they love you a million times a day because they felt they weren’t able to express that enough? Will there be new issues to address? New stories to debunk? And on and on these questions go.
After dealing with weekend exchanges for almost 6 years here are some quick suggestions that I’ve learned over the years from other great mamas and bonusmamas:
1) First day of pickup is to just love on them during a family movie/game night; it gives them time to decompress and get back to what your family rules/values are.
2) Don’t question them on the negatives that you believe may have been occurring in their other home; they already feel that they are carrying a burden. Plus once they are comfortable with you they will share their joy and struggles with you.
3) Don’t overplan your weekends with events, play dates, or lots of video game time to attempt to have your kids feel more excited in your home; honestly it just gives the kids more leeway to play you in the future and creates more anxiety to you due to the busyness of it all.
4) And always express happiness upon hearing exciting news from your child relating to their other parent; they want to see that you are happy for them and their relationship with their other parent. (While it may be hard to be happy for them especially if you think the exciting news is negative in nature, however don’t show it to your child) *This is SO important.
I honestly could have A LOT more suggestions but it’ll become a short novel if I write them all. And while we as parents may be wrestling with some of the above questions however let’s focus on creating a positive environment for our kids first and foremost.
So while I’m a bit anxious for this weekend I still know that no matter what I’ll do my best as a parent and God will do the rest. ✨