If you are going through a divorce, this can be a stressful process all on its own. If you have small children involved, this can add another dynamic to the mix that needs to be handled carefully. Keeping your family’s needs in mind and at the forefront of your divorce process can make all the difference in the long run. Here are five things that you can do to help navigate through your pending divorce when small children are involved.
1. Keep Routines Intact for Your Kids
While you might feel like your world is getting turned upside down if you are going through a divorce, anything you can do to shield uncertainty from your children, the better. This can start with the basics, such as their schedule. Keeping their school, extracurricular activities, and other daily routines with both parents as normal as possible can help lower stress for your children and your household. This will show your children on a daily basis that even if parents are divorcing, the children’s needs and routine will be respected and kept as normal as possible.
2. Keep Kids Out of the Drama
Especially if you have smaller children, they really should be on a need-to-know basis when it comes to the details surrounding your divorce. If your divorce is contentious, this isn’t something that children need to see or be a part of. Don’t badmouth your ex-spouse, and don’t fight in front of your kids. While you might have drama to work through with your ex-spouse, save this for private conversations, for your attorneys, or for the courts.
3. Keep a United Front With Your Ex-Spouse
While your marriage might be unraveling, one thing that you and your spouse will most likely agree on is the safety and emotional well-being of your children. Anything that you can do to keep a united front when speaking with your children can make a huge difference in how they perceive the overall situation. Especially when it comes to concerns surrounding a possible divorce and all of the questions this can bring up, having a place and a time that you can all sit down as a family and be open and honest can go along way in lessening their fears.
4. Find Additional Support for Your Children
If your children are being pulled into a custody battle or are having a hard time with the fallout from an impending divorce, you might not be able to offer enough support to get them through this trying time. If you can find counseling services for your children, this can help them by providing an outside adult support system to navigate their feelings. If you need help finding the right support for your children, your family law attorney might have contacts or advice as well.
5. Remember that Custody Agreements can Change Over Time
While divorce involving children might leave you with more questions that answers, it is important to remember that custody agreements that are decided on today can change over time. While it is worth your while to work hard with your attorney and the courts to decide what is best for your children, this might change over the years. If you aren’t 100% on board with parenting decisions that are made, try to remember that this is an ever evolving process and there is a possibility that time can change things.
When divorce involves children, it is important to navigate this process slowly, thoughtfully, and with the child’s best interests at heart. The good new is, you aren’t alone, and a good family law attorney can help with advice, support, and make sure your divorce process moves through all of the channels it needs to in order to protect you and your family. If you are looking into the initial steps that need to be put in place for a possible divorce, contact us to ensure that your children and their needs are very much a part of the process.