How To Be a Better Dad: Taken Away 

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How To Be a Better Dad: Taken Away 

How To Be a Better Dad is the fatherhood and co-parenting section on SingleDad. Share and exchange great fatherhood advice from our members who are in all stages of fatherhood. This month, learn about how to support your child when one parent is taken away due to legal reasons. 

Dear SingleDad, 

I share a 4 year old son with my now ex of 6 years. She is my ex as of a week ago. We have gone through a rough patch in our relationship and she became physical with me. The cops were called and she was arrested. She is not allowed to be in the same house, around me, or our son. I don’t know how to explain this to him and luckily he wasn’t present when this happened. Do I lie when he asks where mom went? 

-TJ, 31 

How heart broken and betrayed you must all feel. I imagine you all are hoping this pain and legal trouble will pass quickly. I also am hoping your ex will receive the proper help she needs to move forward. It sounds to me like you and your ex will not get back together but you still want her in your son‘s life and that is extremely important for her to be, as long as he would not be in danger. I hope this article can give you some peace and the support you are seeking. 

  • Talk With A Lawyer 

If this is something new for you all I would advise to speak with a lawyer first. Something like this is tricky, but a lawyer will be able to help you through the process and rules. A lawyer may also know how your ex can still have contact with your son, depending on the severity of the case. 

  • Protection 

We don’t want to lie to our children, but we all have at some point. It could be for good reasons – a surprise or you can’t face breaking their heart. We teach our children “honesty is the best policy” and it is but again sometimes we may feel withholding the truth will serve them better. In my own opinion, being that your son is only 4 years old and that is his mother, I would not tell him the real reason why she is gone. Children are very impressionable and he only sees his mom one way: his mom. You don’t want to change his view of his mother at such a young age when she still has room to grow from this. He’s so young he may not even be able to wrap his head around it and it would be very traumatic for him if he can. 

  • Professional Help 

Not only speaking to a lawyer, but speaking to a therapist about advice on your son’s emotional well being and growth can make a difference. A licensed therapist for children has put in the work and chose this for a living to make a difference. He/she can give you guidance about what would be best and how to continue your lives. 

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