Regardless of what happened between you and your spouse, children are often the ones that suffer the most when it is time for a marriage to end. Despite your differences, forcing your children to choose between one parent or the other can create serious conflict that affects their relationships in the future. Divorce does not have to be messy, and you can minimize the damage if both you and your spouse are invested in mitigating the emotional harm to the children and to each other. Your children care about both their parents and do not want to see you suffer.
Choosing between parents
When parents fight and bad-mouth each other, children often feel as if they must choose which one to love the most. They also may feel as if they must bad-mouth one parent when they are with the other. Because they love you both, this can create serious conflict within them. As your children grow older and become more like you and your ex, hearing negative things about their parents becomes particularly damaging. Your children should never have to choose between loving one parent or the other.
Losing a relationship with the non-custodial parent
No matter what you choose, your children must get used to limited interaction with a parent they are used to living with. This will be a huge adjustment for the entire family. When you are the non-custodial parent, keep in mind that your children want you to fight for time with them to prove that they are still important to you no matter how difficult it is to spend time together.
Put yourself in their place
You are hurting as your marriage ends, and facing a life of uncertainty and changes, but your children have no idea what to expect. When you think of your future, consider how your children feel and try to see how they feel through their eyes. Keep communication lines open and always validate their feelings.
You can keep it calm
Mediation is a valuable service that allows couples to end their marriage without all the fighting and disagreements that often go on during a traditional divorce. Contact a qualified mediator today to learn more.