Women's Divorce Blog

Life After Divorce?

The hurt and disruption caused by a divorce can make you question whether there can be life after divorce. How can I pick up the pieces and how good will the quality of life be after a divorce?

Coparenting and Childhood Accidents

  • Establish a plan before the crisis hits
  • Arrange contact numbers
  • Keep emergency numbers and first aid kit handy
  • Take child CPR classes

Establish a plan before the crisis hits

  • Share information on allergies and other medical history and even write it down and carry it with you. You can obtain a summary from your child's pediatrician if necessary
  • If there is an accident at daycare or school, who will respond? You may decide on the parent nearest the school or a relative who is nearby if both of you are some distance away at work
  • Know where the nearest hospital is if you need to drive there. During an emergency is not the time to be trying to find driving directions or getting lost

 

Arrange contact numbers

Cell phones are invaluable. Swap cell phone numbers and state whether they should be used only for emergencies or whether it is OK to use at other times. Respect the agreement. Have a backup contact number or person. If you can't be reached by cell phone e.g. in a meeting, have a designated person that can be reached who can come let you know what is going on. Call the other parent as soon as you possibly can. If you cannot make the call, ask someone else such as a nurse, coworker or neighbor to call your ex.

 

Joint legal custody

Understand whether you have the power to make major medical decisions by yourself. If in doubt, check with your attorney. Joint legal custody usually means that major medical decisions should be made together with the other parent. If an emergency decision has to be made, try to contact the other parent if they are not present. At all times though, the health of your child comes first and there may be circumstances especially in an emergency where you have to make a decision by yourself.

Emergency numbers 

Keep a list of emergency numbers with you. This should include the other parent's emergency contact numbers, your child's doctors number and poison control number at a minimum. Remember storing these on a cellphone is a good idea but you should also keep a written list with you in case you forget your cellphone or the battery is not charged.

First Aid

  • Past advice was to keep a bottle of ipecac syrup at home. Only use this if directed to by the poison control center or a doctor. Going to the emergency room and use of activated charcoal or other methods is often preferred
  • Keep a first aid kit in the house and in your car
  • Take infant and child CPR classes. Methods used for infants and children differ from those used for adults. These classes as well as first aid classes are often available at your local hospital

Blame

Do not try to verbally blame the other parent for the accident even if they were responsible. It is a natural instinct but make your child your priority and deal with any issue after your child is safe. Do not discuss this anywhere near them as they have enough to deal with recovering from the accident. Criticizing or blaming the other parent will just upset them.

Travel

If you are going to be traveling whether with your child or not, provide the other parent with an emergency number and an address. The address is important if you cannot be reached by phone.

Medical Expenses

Hopefully your divorce agreement has outlined how medical expenses will be handled including how health insurance is worked. Make sure you fulfill any requirements that your insurance company may have set e.g. notifying them of hospitalization with a set time period.
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