Experiencing a divorce is never an easy time. Knowing that a union you once thought would last forever actually won’t is a damaging and emotional experience for anyone. If you have children involved, this emotional and stressful time can be all the more worrying as you not only have to navigate your own feelings but that of your children too.
All parents want or indeed should want what is best for their children and being able to put their needs above your own issues will no doubt help you to move through the process as pain-free as possible and in a way that doesn’t cause any undue worry and upset to your children.
Discuss the Situation
Adult matters are commonly swept under the carpet when it comes to involving children. Such grown matters have historically been hushed in front of young ears, and this secrecy can be massively damaging to a child’s emotional state. While you don’t need to be fully honest and open as you would with another adult, keeping the lines of communication open with your child on a level they can understand will help you support your child through this time and ensure their best interests are kept in mind.
Divorce evokes strong emotions in everyone going through this process. Some good, some bad, but children will not only pick up on how you are feeling but have their feelings and reactions to your emotions too. Allow them to talk openly about how they feel and reassure them that they are still loved and their feelings are valid will help them find comfort in how they process this incredibly stressful time. Shutting them off and removing them from the situation they are involved in will only cause a rift and bring feelings of negative and hurt into the picture.
Lead By Example
It can be easy to get lost in a messy divorce. Not all divorces are amicable and, as such, end up with long, drawn-out processes with a lot of squabbling. There is no way to fully protect your child from this situation, especially if you need a family law court operation to help you draw up access plans and visitation rights.
Set the example you want to be for your child. Show them how you are dealing with this in a grown-up way to the best of your stability and avoid tit for tat spats that only serve to cause harm to everyone involved.
Your Child Didn’t Get Divorced.
If your children are still going to have full visitation with both parents, then you need to remember that whatever your feelings are towards your divorced spouse, your children still have a loving parent-child relationship. What went wrong in the marriage wasn’t their fault, and nor should they be made to feel it was or to feel guilty for wanting to have a healthy relationship with both of their parents. Looking past your own feelings to put what is best for your child front and centre will help your child adjust as best as possible and create a loving family unit that looks and works differently going forward.