Tips to Create a Comfortable Home After Divorce
Whether you are moving to a new place or keeping possession of the one you shared after your separation, it’s important to create a space that’s truly yours. Creating your own space gives you the opportunity to establish yourself apart from the previous chapter and choose colors, decor, and accessories that better reflect who you are. It’s also important to establish a home that your children can feel comfortable in but recognize as separate from the previous family home.
If you’re worried about how to create a comfortable space you and your children can call home after the divorce is finalized, here are some tips to take into consideration as you move forward.
Take items important to your children.
Take sentimental items if you are selling the family house. Whether it’s a door jamb that was used to mark the heights of your growing children or a sticker covered door, don’t be afraid to remove and replace the sentimental pieces that truly made your home a special place for your children. Not only will it show how much you care about their feelings in this process, it will give them a taste of the familiar as you move forward.
Get rid of items that carry “his,” “her,” or “us” status.
When sorting through what to take with you when you move, don’t be afraid to be ruthless getting rid of anything that will remind you of your spouse. While this may seem counter to tip number one, it’s important to remember that there’s a difference between sentimental items that have value to your children and ones that carry meaning for you and your spouse.
Place important items in important places.
Pull out any mementos packed away from your life before marriage. Dig out your sentimental items and favorite pieces of artwork and display them in places where you will always see them and can appreciate them. This is also a great opportunity for parents to create new memories with children. A great afternoon activity is working together to create new artwork for your new walls with inexpensive canvases and acrylic paints from your favorite craft store. This simple activity can help everyone feel more at home.
Paint the walls whatever color you want.
This is a good tip no matter if you have moved into a new dwelling or are staying in the one you used to share. Choosing a paint color or allowing your children to choose the paint for their own room(s) is the quickest and easiest way to put your stamp on your home. Bedrooms, especially the master, and the main living space are great places to start as these are where you spend most of your time and will have the biggest impact in making this house your own.
Take new pictures.
Even if you don’t want to get rid of all of the family pictures from before your divorce, it’s important to have some that document the way your family is now. Fill your new spaces with pictures of you and your kids, you and your friends, you and your family to remind yourself of all you’ve accomplished and all the memories you’re going to create. If you are determined to have no pictures from before the divorce, let your children keep some in their rooms so they know you’re not trying to completely erase your ex-spouse from their lives.
Throw a party.
When you’re ready, invite over friends and family to help bring laughter and new memories into your space. Make this time all about showing yourself and your children that happiness and laughter can and will exist in your new space. Making new happy memories is the best thing you can do to feel at home sooner.
For more tips on divorcing with children, make sure to read our blog on drafting a parenting plan in Washington state. If you have any questions about how collaborative family law can help smooth the divorce process, feel free to call us at 206.409.4086 or send us an email.