It can be traumatic to go through a divorce, even if you and your spouse agree on it and are filing an uncontested divorce. However, it is important to remember that your divorce is not just hard for you and your partner. Your children could have a difficult time coping with the changes in their family life too. Here are tips on making your divorce easier for your children.
#1: Tell Your Children About Your Divorce Together
You and your spouse should tell your kids that you plan to get divorced together. Avoid blaming each other for the divorce when discussing it with the children. You should also make sure that they know that they did not cause your divorce and will still have a loving relationship with both of you.
#2: Don't Say Bad Things About Your Spouse
You may have a lot of anger at your partner and blame them for your divorce. However, you do not want to say bad things about them to your children. This could make it harder for them to have a good relationship with you or your spouse if they believe that you are being unfair. A better approach is to try to say nice things whenever possible about your partner.
#3: Don't Ask Your Kids to Pick Sides
Do not ask your children to pick sides in your divorce. Although you and your spouse are splitting up, your kids need the love and support of both of you. You would make the divorce much harder on them and hurt their relationships with you if they feel forced to pick one parent over the other one.
#4: Make Changes Gradually
There will be many changes in your children's lives when you and your partner are no longer living together. Try to make the changes slowly, if possible, to make it easier for them to adjust. You should also tell the children about changes to their schedules, visitation with each parent, and their activities before they happen, so they know what to expect.
#5: Support Each Other
You and your partner need to work together to parent your children. You should help each other with arrangements to pick up the kids from school and activities, keep each other informed about important issues in your children's lives, and be consistent in the rules and schedules you set for your kids when sharing parenting time.
#6: Include Each Other in Special Events
Even if you and your spouse really do not get along or like to see each other, you may need to be together for special events in your kids' lives, such as school events, graduations, birthday parties, and more. You will make it easier on your kids if they know that both of you will be there for them on these happy days in their lives.
#7: Seek Professional Help
If your children are struggling with your divorce, you should find a family therapist who can help them express their feelings and cope with the changes they are struggling with. Seeing a therapist can also help avoid problems in school and with relationships and friendships, which is common when kids are having difficulty adjusting to a divorce.
Are you considering filing for divorce in Virginia? Call our Norfolk office to schedule a free consultation with our experienced family law attorneys to learn about your options and how we can protect your rights.