Getting divorced may be one of the biggest challenges in your life. Like most other conscientious parents in Iowa, you have your children's best interests in mind whenever you make life-changing decisions of any kind. As for divorce, you never thought you'd have to have such a conversation with them. However, unexpected events happen, and this is happening to you. The most you can do is try to support your kids as best you can while recognizing that their needs may be different from your own.
No two children handle their parents' marital split exactly the same. One child may retreat into a shell and become extremely introverted. Another may be quite the opposite, acting out at every turn and experiencing angry and highly emotional outbursts. Then there are those who fall somewhere in the middle, sometimes getting a bit weepy or emotional and other times acting nonchalant, as though they haven't a care in the world.
Helpful tips to help most kids in times of divorce
Although your children's needs may be different from another parent's children, and even within your own family group, there are certain general ideas that may be helpful in most divorce situations where children are involved. The following list of ideas explains more on this topic:
- One of the most crucial issues to remember when helping your kids cope with your divorce is the fact that they are children, not adults. To protect their innocence and keep their stress levels as low as possible, it's typically best to cautiously choose the information you share with them. No loving parent wishes to burden his or her children unnecessarily.
- Children fare best in divorce when parents strive to maintain their usual routines in life. Extreme disruptions in your kids' daily lives may cause them to stress out, big time. The more you can help them maintain a sense of normalcy, the better.
- Children do not get divorced. Therefore, it's best to keep in mind that your kids still need ample time with you and their other parent. The more you are both involved in their lives, the easier their transition to a new lifestyle may be.
- Speaking negatively about your former spouse in front of your children is probably not conducive to their well-beings. You may think that since they heard you and their other parent argue constantly during marriage then it's not a big deal to let them know just how you feel about your former spouse. In truth, sharing private feelings about adult matters with your kids tends to backfire.
You know your children's needs and personalities better than anyone. The problem is many child-related issues have ripple effects that wind up causing legal disputes in divorce. For instance, if your spouse refuses to adhere to an existing court order and is trying to use your kids against you, you do not have to sit back and allow such things to go on. There is support and recourse available.
Many Iowa parents ask family law attorneys to act on their behalves to address such matters in court.