How to Help Your Children Through Your Divorce
A divorce can be hard for a family even when both parties are trying their best to be amicable and do what is best for the children. It can be downright traumatizing when children are dragged into custody battles where their parents are trying to get them to pick a side.
If you are a parent going through a divorce, this is most likely a difficult time for you. After all, divorce is not something anyone plans on happening to them. The real thing to think about is what you can do to make things easier on yourself and your children as you make your way through this difficult time. Here are a few tips to keep in mind.
Don’t talk badly about the other parent.
Depending on the circumstances of your divorce, you may be feeling anger and frustration towards your ex-spouse. However, it is never wise to try to get your children to pick sides or to vent about your ex-spouse to your children. This can cause them to feel even more stress over the situation than they already are feeling. Even if you ex is actually acting badly, find someone else to vent to. That’s what friends are for!
Make sure they have space to express their feelings.
Your children will likely feel a mixture of feelings about your divorce, and that is normal. Let them talk to you without judgement. If they need to vent, then let them. You could even get individual or family therapy, so that they have a neutral space to express their emotions.
Get legal help.
Navigating a divorce agreement can be difficult if there are children, houses, or significant financial negotiations involved. Even if both parties are working together to reach a fair agreement, it is still wise to get a legal professional look over your agreement before you sign divorce papers. AsHuntsville, AL divorce attorney Leigh Daniel explains, having a legal professional go through your divorce settlement papers can save you heartache and stress in the long-run, as you and your children will know exactly what to expect going forward with well-crafted financial and custody agreements.
Make transitions as easy as possible.
When your child goes to see your ex for a visit, don’t make it a traumatic event. Say goodbye to your child with a smile, and don’t argue with the other parent during pick-ups or drop-offs. Your child should not feel guilty for spending time with the other parent or feel like they have to pick sides. As Amber James, a child support lawyer in Huntsville AL explains, having to go back and forth between homes can be stressful while a child adapts, but making the pick-ups and drop-offs as calm as possible can help.
Create a support system.
It can be hard to be there for your children if you’re running on empty yourself. Make sure you have supportive family members and friends who you can talk to when you need support. If you’re struggling to emotionally process the divorce, it may also be wise to find a qualified therapist who can help you.
While the process of going through a divorce with children is bound to be somewhat stressful no matter how well you and your ex handle it, following these steps can help you make the process somewhat easier for yourself and your children. While things may be stressful at the moment, staying grounded and in control can help you make things easier now, and can help you, your children, and your ex move on with dignity.