If your divorce has you stressed out, don’t feel like you’re alone. Most individuals who dissolve their marriage end up feeling overwhelmed at some point in the process.
Yet, as you may know if you’re reading this post, dealing with custody-related issues can be especially worrisome, as they can impact the amount of time that you spend with your kids and how your relationship with them may be impacted.
And while you’re dealing with the emotional ramifications of these disputes, your children may find themselves stuck in the middle of two parents that they love. This can be heartbreaking to them, leaving them unsure of how to act, how to respond, and where to turn for support.
Reducing the stress of divorce for your children
If you want to protect your children and their best interests as fully as possible, then sure, you have to argue for a custody arrangement that you think is right.
But there’s also a lot that you can do throughout the divorce process to ease the burden on your children and protect their well-being. Let’s look at what you can do to keep your children emotionally safe during the marriage dissolution process:
- Encourage contact with the other parent: Remember your children love both parents. So, as long as it’s safe to do so, you should encourage your children to spend time with and otherwise have contact with their other parent. This can make the divorce process a little easier for them.
- Don’t use your child to send messages: Even if you struggle to effectively communicate with the other parent, you shouldn’t rely on your children to send messages. This puts them directly in the middle of the conflict, oftentimes leaving them exposed to a harsh response once the message is received. Remove your children from that conflict and find a more effective way to communicate with your spouse.
- Stick to routines: Divorce disrupts life as your children know it. This can make their life feel chaotic and their future uncertain. But you can provide your children with the stability that they need to thrive by finding a new routine and sticking to it. Have open dialogue with your children about what those routines will look like, too, that way they feel like they retain some sense of control when everything else seems to be spinning away from them.
- Check in regularly: Don’t be afraid to regularly talk to your children about how they’re feeling. They’re going to experience a lot of different emotions, but it’s healthy for them to express them so that they can gain acceptance and understanding. By keeping open communication with your children, you can also help put some of their fears to rest, such as by discussing with them the things that won’t change even after the divorce is finalized.
- Slowly incorporate new love interests: When you find a new significant other, slowly introduce them into your children’s lives. After all, it’s going to take your children some time to grieve the loss of their parents’ marriage, so moving too quickly may leave them feeling like you don’t value what’s important to them.
Finding the way forward that’s best for your family
You’ve got a lot to consider as you navigate your divorce. As stressful as that may seem, you should take some comfort knowing that you can retain some control over the process. You just have to know how to effectively plan, negotiate, and advocate for what you think is right.
If you need some assistance in doing that, then you might want to consider reaching out to a legal team that is well-versed in this area of the law.