Isn't it common sense to focus on the kids and not try to make them feel bad? I purposely make it quick and wish them fun etc.
How do you all handle change overs?
"Time to go to Daddy's!" (or mommy's - 'cause I'm pretty sure XH does it the same way) (Or "Daddy's here!" for when he used to come to the door to get them - he lives next door so they mostly just walked across the yard)
"grab your bags. Do you have everything? Did you remember jammies?"
"I love you! Sleep Well! (Have a good day!) See you tomorrow (Monday) morning"
maybe another kiss/hug for one or the other (if someone did not have jammies and had to go get them from their room, the hugging/kissing sometimes starts over ;-) )
ETA - kids respond to our attitudes and words. They usually don't have any baggage about this stuff if we act cool and matter-of-fact about it. All the drama a parent creates at drop offs is gonna create drama for the kid
You are totally right-it makes me nuts when parents do that. It just makes the kids feel guilty about leaving that parent.
I give hugs and kisses, say bye, tell them to have so much fun, and let them know when I will see them again. I did the same for my stepdaughter when I lived with her and she was heading back to her mom's.
he probably won't understand it. It's his M.O. to make sure everyone around him FEELS how upset he is about whatever. He doesn't understand inappropriate, because he lives inappropriately - that's why you're divorcing him
I'd try to set up a way to distract the kids quickly when they arrive - have a snack or activity ready, ask him a question (unemotional) that will distract him, etc. Hurry him out of there and maybe he'll get the hint, even if he doesn't like it.
Quickly . I always remind my daughter to call if she wants to talk while she is away. Her dad is long winded because he does not have quite as often as me, and he does REALLY miss her sometimes so I give him a pass. But I try hard to hurry him up, say things like "Hurry and come with mommy, so you can call daddy when you get home! Won't that be silly?!" and she doesn't feel so bad about the hand overs when we get creative and keep it postive.
Yeah I would also try to push him along. Maybe if you had lots of things to do and were running out the door as soon as he got there for pick-up and drop-off it would help. I had to do that with my ex so he wouldn't stay and hang out at my house. Now it's pretty quick. "I love you, have a great time with daddy. I'll see you tomorrow/before bedtime." Will I miss them? Yeah, sometimes. But I don't want them to miss ME so I say nothing. When they return I say "I missed you! Did you have fun? Tell me about your day. Want to hear about what I did today?" So I do let them know that I missed them and love them but not until they return because I don't want them sad and thinking that time with daddy makes mommy sad. They should enjoy spending time with their father without worrying that they are leaving mommy all by herself.