parenting

Coping with Separation

Any military-related separation can be tough for the entire family and may be especially hard on children. The good news is that you and your family can work together to help your children cope during each stage of the separation in a positive way.

How to Stay Connected While Miles Apart

Deployments or other separations can be tough for military families, including new parents.

Transitioning Through Reunion

A parent's return home after deployment is often a time of celebration. It can also be a time of stress as families adjust to being back together. During this transition period, it is common for family members to experience a range of emotions, including excitement and anxiety or concern about changing family roles. This article highlights common reactions that children may have after a parent returns home. It suggests how to respond to these behaviors and offers tools and resources that military families can use to build family resilience during the reunion phase of deployment.

Helping Children Cope During Deployment

Deployments can be challenging for the entire military family. Even with the best preparation children may experience stress when one or both parents deploy. The at-home parent or caregiver may also experience stress as they adjust to new family roles and responsibilities. Although deployment may be challenging, military families often make adjustments that lead to new sources of strength and support.

Preparing Children for Deployment

Deployment can be emotionally challenging for the entire military family and it can be especially confusing and stressful for children. Parents can also experience stress, as they wonder how the transition will affect their children and parenting responsibilities. This article focuses on pre-deployment tips that can help prepare military families for the absence of one or both parents. The tips and resources below are designed to boost family resilience and readiness by building trust and cooperation within a family before one or both parents deploy.

Coordinating Child Care for Military Families

The demands of military life can be challenging for families, especially for working parents. Arranging safe, nurturing child care is important to help you meet your family and professional responsibilities, and coordinating the appropriate care for your child can help strengthen your family's psychological well-being and resilience. The tips and tools in this article can help you identify child care options or make the change to a new care provider seamless for your child.

Creating a Family Care Plan

Deployment can be a stressful time for military families. An important way to ease stress and boost family resilience and readiness is to make sure your family has a plan in place for when you are called to duty away from home.

Teens & Deployment: What to Expect and How to Help

Teens may be anxious, proud, sad or even confused about their parent’s upcoming deployment. Since your teen is already undergoing so many physical, emotional and social changes, taking steps to prepare him or her before you leave can be a helpful way to maintain stability in your family. Take some proactive steps to prepare your teen for your departure by trying to understand his or her reactions, offering your support and helping to establish healthy coping skills and behaviors. These steps can better equip your family to handle your extended absence and help things run more smoothly while you’re gone.

Helping Toddlers to Preteens Communicate About Changes

Transitions impact the entire military family and can affect children’s emotional and behavioral health . Children will cope with changes such as a parent’s deployment, reunion, or move to a new town differently, and it’s important to understand their feelings and reactions. By encouraging your children to express their feelings, you will have a better understanding of their concerns and as a result, be better able to help them adjust to changes.1 Regardless of the new circumstances, expressing concerns as a family can help children feel more connected and strengthen overall family resilience.

Stay Connected with Deployed Parents

It can be difficult for families to stay in touch or feel connected when a parent is deployed. Using online programs, such as the ones highlighted in this article, can help families maintain regular communication, reassure children about their parent’s deployment and reinforce parents’ bonds with their children.

Pages

PDF formatted documents require Adobe's free Acrobat Reader software. If you do not already have this software installed on your computer, please download it from Adobe's Website.