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Protecting children from the effects of divorce

On Behalf of | Dec 21, 2020 | Divorce |

When a marriage is irreparable and spouses have decided to go their separate ways, they have many things to sort out. If Missouri couples who decide to divorce have children, making the decisions that are best for them is paramount. Children are often the most affected by their parents’ divorce, so parents need to be mindful what is said in front of the kids and how they act toward each other when the children are present. After all, the children aren’t to blame for the breakdown of their parents’ marriage.

Kids need to be protected as much as possible from the effects of divorce. For parents to meet this goal, they need to work together for the sake of the kids to create a co-parenting plan that gives children the chance to maintain positive relationships with both parents. Children need consistency, support and the feeling of being secure as they get used to their new way of life.

Strategies to help

According to professionals, there are some strategies parents can employ to help their children as they adjust to a new situation:

  • Break the news of the divorce to the children together.
  • When one parent fosters their children’s relationship with the other parent, it shows the children that they come first, and they won’t feel guilty about leaving one parent to be with the other.
  • Subconsciously relying on children to emotional support is a large faux pas. Parents who are struggling with their divorce should seek help from a therapist, trusted friend or family member — not the children.
  • In an atmosphere of love and support, allow children to process the news the way the feel they need to.
  • As parents move through the divorce process, they need to keep their complaints and emotions in check in front of the children.
  • Keep the children’s routine as consistent as possible.

As Missouri parents work on their co-parenting plan during their divorce, they must keep their children’s needs first. The plan that is created should make the children feel loved, supported. Each parent may wish to seek independent legal guidance prior to a co-parenting plan being fashioned.

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St. Louis County Bar Association
Illinois State Bar Association
LEX | The Missouri Bar