Going through a divorce can be hard on adults, let alone children. While the parents need to remain emotionally healthy, it is also important that the children involved in the divorce—if there are any— are not taken completely unawares by the actions of their parents. Depending on the age of your children, they may not remember much, but there are lasting consequences to a bitter relationship between former spouses. Below are some tips* for you to help your children cope with divorce:
Do not let your children see you and your partner fight. This includes talking bad about your spouse, either around or to the children. Children are impressionable, and negative communication could alter the children’s views and alienate one or both of the parents.
Make the children feel loved. Regardless of how you feel about your spouse, it is important to remember that your children came out of that union. Don’t get so caught up that you forget to check in on them with how they are handling the divorce, or to even do things as simple as asking about their day. Knowing that they are still important in both of their parents’ eyes can help them through the divorce.
Don’t share more than the children need to know. Yes, it is important that your children are not blindsided by the divorce or separation. However, it is equally as important that you only share with them what they will understand. For example, a four-year-old will have a different understanding of what is going on that would a 16-year-old. Regardless of age, it is still important that you speak with your children about what is going on and openly answer any questions they might have about the situation.
There are systems in place in California to help determine who gets custody, who pays how much child support, etc., and seeking out help could be beneficial to all involved. At the Law Office Of Anne Dowden Saxton, we have years of experience helping people through legal issues of their divorce and subsequent possible custody battle.
*Tips given are not clinical advice and a family therapist or counselor should be consulted