Thousands of Ohio residents go through the divorce process each year. Although the circumstances of any given divorce case can vary widely, there are certain issues that will likely be addressed in almost every case: alimony; child custody; child support; property division; and the applicability of prenuptial agreements. However, in the middle of a divorce, which can feel chaotic at times, parents should be focused on one thing above all: the impact of the divorce on their kids.
What do your kids need from you in the middle of a divorce? Well, a recent report noted quite a few tips for parents to heed in the best-case scenarios. For starters, think about the questions that your kids will have about why their parents are no longer going to be married. This can be hard to perceive, but many kids will be thinking that the divorce may be their fault, or that they may be separated from their siblings in some way. Other kids might think that divorce is a reflection of how their parents feel about them, not the other parent. When it comes to divorce, the parents need to be the adults in the room and try to work together, as much as possible, to make the divorce issue cause less anxiety for their kids.
Next, although most parents want as much time with their kids as possible during the divorce process and afterward, it can be important for parents to consider the kids’ needs – not their own. Will it benefit the kids to be bouncing back and forth from one house to another all the time? Or should the focus be on what the kids need instead?
Lastly, it is extremely important for parents to avoid playing off each other through the kids. Don’t insult your soon-to-be ex-spouse in front of your kids, and don’t try to send “subtle” messages to the other parent through your kids. When parents heed these tips, the divorce process can be smoother for everyone involved, but especially the kids.