>> Monday, May 25, 2015
Many military families are facing deployment on a regular basis and some of the most affected are the children that have a difficult time grasping what is happening in the world around them - especially when it comes to a family member deploying. The confusion and chaos can affect life on the playground, in school, and in other social situations. The most important thing an adult can do to help children deal with deployment is to educate them about what is happening. Following these easy steps can help:
Making sure children understand what the word “deployment” means is incredibly important. The word is used in the media, at the dinner table, and in everyday conversation. Explaining where mommy/daddy is going (with a general overview of the region or country) and what he/she will be doing (without going into incredible detail) will help children gain an understanding of what is happening. For the soldier, if you can, let your child help you pack. Letting your child help you pack will allow him/her to be more involved in the process and also allow them to "care" for you. Ask your child to draw some pictures so that you can hang them once you get settled. Not only will they have great fun but you will enjoy their artwork for days and months to come.
Assure Children and Answer Questions
Consistency and Routine
Communicate with Teachers, Coaches, Etc.
Good Behavior/Bad Behavior
When in doubt—just remember to let your child know that he/she is not alone and that, as a family, you will get through this together!