5 Tips to Help Your Children Adapt to Your Divorce
Divorce is an unfortunate and difficult time for any family. What once was a happily ever after between two people can corrode over time, and often the couple has children to consider when potentially ending their marriage.
Perhaps you’ve tried counseling or working it out amongst yourselves for the sake of your marriage or because of your children, but after trying for a while, a divorce may be inevitable. After talking to your Denver divorce attorney that handles family law, the process has begun, and now it’s time to think about how to make it easier on the kids.
According to World Population Review, nearly half of all marriages end in divorce, despite divorce rates declining in recent years. That’s a lot of families that need to heal and adapt to their new reality. This is more difficult for the children than anyone. Below is a list of five ways to make the process easier for your children.
1. Speak To & About Each Other Amicably
Nothing makes it harder on your kids than them having to watch their parents fight all the time. Even in a nasty divorce with both parents pitted against each other, it’s best to put on a brave face for your children to avoid any additional stress on the child.
This means don’t complain about their mother or father to your kids. Make sure phone calls or any interaction between the two parents is either amicable or out of earshot. Children can still have a happy family unit despite a divorce if the parents can work together to make it amicable.
2. Don’t Force Unnecessary Child Custody Schedules
In most normal divorce circumstances, both parents will receive some form of custody over the children. While not forcing your children to pick a parent, or decide a certain schedule over another, let them have a say in the future layout. Having to go from house to house is hard enough without the kids not having any say in the matter. Develop a plan that works for everyone, and involve the kids in the process when possible, especially if they’re older.
3. Handle Family Events Together
If possible, handle family events, such as birthday parties, Christmas celebrations, graduations, and others together. This can help kids celebrate their most important moments while having both parents in one place at the same time, versus separate graduation celebrations, etc.
This shows a strong relationship in the family between both parents and children and makes things easier for scheduling events and experiencing important events in your children’s lives. While you maybe don’t need to celebrate Christmas together, a shared dinner for a birthday or other celebration might be a good idea.
4. Be Supportive Of Time Spent With the Other Parent
Even if you aren’t a fan of your child’s other parent, that doesn’t mean the child has to not like them also. Make sure you’re vocal about the importance of your child seeing both parents. If there’s a special occasion for the other parent that lines up with your time with the child, consider sacrificing that time so they can spend time together. Since children everywhere only have a single parent in some cases, value your child’s privilege of having both.
5. Communicate Honestly About the Situation
Don’t keep your kids in the dark about what’s going on in your marriage. While it is ultimately the parent’s responsibility and burden to carry, your children deserve an honest explanation for why their parents are separating. If there are ugly details involved, paint a more PG-rated picture. But make sure they understand why this is happening and answer any questions they may have about the situation.