Unfortunately, divorce is a part of our society, as 40 to 50% couples divorce. Divorce is a difficult event in a peron’s life and all members of the family are impacted. However, there are some things that can be done to have a healthy divorce.
1. Cooperation, communication, and mediation
The end of a marriage typically uleashes a flood of emotions including anger, grief, anxiety and fear. Try not to think of a divorce as a battle and utilize mediation as an alterntative to court proceedings.
2. Take care of yourself
The changes brought on by separation and divorce can be overwhelming. Tap into your support network. Utilize divorce care groups. Begin therapy. Get involved in activities or hobbies.
3. Children need support and are not pawns
Children can often take divorce of their parents very hard and struggle. Parents need to understand how to help their children through the process through some key points:
A) give your child a simple, age appropriate, honest explanation about the separation or divorce. If possible, both parents should be present and neutral when providing this info.
B) Reassure your child early and often that the divorce is not their fault.
C) Set up a regular parenting time schedule and provide that info to the children.
D) As the adults, talk to each other about schedules, changes, issues, concerns. Do not pass messages through the children. They need to feel stable and that their parents are taking care of things as they always have.
D) Do not criticize your ex to or in front of the children, stay neutral and encourage a relationship with the other parent. Parental manipulation or alienation does exist and deeply harms a child, if you suspect this may be happening, contact a therapist who has experience with this issue to support the child/children and yourself.