Divorce brings new obstacles and you may be struggling through this difficult, emotional and transformative time in your life. Being a parent is hard, divorcing can be trying, and we all put so much guilt on ourselves not meeting the perfectionist parenting goals we have while we do the best we can.
So, while you may need to let the gourmet meals and tidy rooms slide while you get your feet under you, here is what you should prioritize.
What Your Kids Really Need During Divorce:
- Love & Reassurance: Children need to understand that they are loved, and they are allowed to love those important to them in return. They need reassurance that they are not to blame for the breakup. Remember that as much as you may dislike your spouse, your children are “half-them” and negative attitudes towards them can affect your children. Kids need to know they can trust and count on their parents now more than ever.
- Open Communication: Your children need to know they can come to you for answers. They may have many conflicting emotions, reactions and desires. Let them know it is ok for them to talk to you, and ok for them to talk to your ex. Encourage them to reach out to friends, teachers or counselors for support.
- Consistency & Structure: Where new patterns are put in place it critical to have clear expectations, rules and routines. To the extent possible try to find shared ground with your ex regarding discipline and scheduling.
- To be Kids: Your children are just that, your kids. Even as they grow into the teenage years it is important to remember that the co-parent will always be their parent. Your child should not be your confidant, your spy, your ally, your messenger, your counselor or your sounding board.
Looking for assistance navigating your divorce or other family law matter in the Greater Seattle Area? At Elise Buie Family Law Group our knowledgeable family law attorneys are ready to help. Please contact Elise Buie Family Law Group, PLLC for a free consultation. For more information about collaborative divorce or mediation please visit our website.