Children who experience a divorce in their family can be affected in many ways, some of which are negative and long-term, which is why protecting them and being a supportive parent throughout the process is as important as ever. When working with an attorney regarding child custody, be sure to stress the importance of protecting your children during your complex divorce or custody litigation.
There are ways that you and your spouse can approach the situation to reduce conflict and help your children adapt to the changes taking place. Below are some of the ways that you can help:
- Learn to Co-Parent Well – Imagine being a child whose parents suddenly split and do not interact with each other any longer. This can be extremely difficult for children to understand and accept. To make the divorce easier on your children, remember to support the other parent. This doesn’t mean that you have to be best friends, but co-parenting with them and supporting your children together can make a huge difference with how your children react to and feel about the divorce, and their parents.
- Protect Your Children’s Home & Schedule – When a family goes through a divorce, the children may feel like their world is suddenly changing and is unpredictable. This can make them scared and anxious. Help your children by being consistent with their home, schedule, friends, schooling, etc. as much as possible.
- Encourage Open Communication – One way to protect your children during your divorce is to encourage open communication. You may not know how or what to say at times, but remembering to communicate with your children about what’s happening and how they’re feeling is more important. Make sure to ask your children how they’re doing and feeling, and encourage them to express themselves in whatever way they feel most comfortable. Some ideas include stories, drawings, and conversations.
- Care for Yourself – Only when you are taking good care of yourself can you take good care of your children. Divorce is an emotional and overwhelming time for everyone involved. Not only will your children’s lives be affected, but yours is changing, as well. Make sure to take care of yourself physically and emotionally, and lean on your family and friends, when needed.
Many children are impacted during a divorce, but it is important to remember that the parents have the capacity to support them in many ways and give them the best chance to continue developing without any long-term problems.
Wilder Mahood McKinley & Oglesby is among the most respected and longest-serving family law firms in the state. Our Pittsburgh child custody lawyers are experienced litigators who advocate for our clients in divorce trials and custody hearings. They are also highly capable negotiators who can employ effective negotiation and mediation techniques, when appropriate, to forge durable parenting plans.
Meet with our lawyers, and we can discuss your situation thoroughly and assess your options for seeking the degree of joint legal custody, physical custody and/or visitation that is best suited to you and your children. To learn more, contact us online or call our law firm at 412-261-4040.