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Preparing children for the realities of divorce

Going through a divorce is often an emotional process for Virginia couples who wish to escape an unhappy marriage, and this can be especially true when they are parents. People sometimes choose to remain in an unfulfilling marriage to protect their children from psychological trauma, but researchers have concluded that this may actually do more harm than good. Divorce can be hard on children who are unprepared for the changes that it ushers in, but there are some proactive steps parents can take that may cushion the blow.

Perhaps the most positive step that parents can take is to set an example and make every effort to avoid arguing or shouting in front of their children. Many of the insecurities that trouble the children of divorcing parents are rooted in fear, and scared children may be less likely to share their feelings with parents who seem to be angry much of the time. Experts say that divorcing spouses may be better able to discharge their parenting duties when they are able to avoid or reduce stress and focus instead on what their children need.

Divorcing parents should also stick to routines whenever possible and try to limit the amount of disruption that their children are put through. Going through a divorce can be difficult enough for children, and adding a new school or a new home to the equation could add to their psychological trauma. When drastic changes are unavoidable, parents should explain to their children why their lives are being uprooted in as candid a way as possible.

Experienced family law attorneys may advise their clients to tread carefully in these situations. Settling matters amicably is generally preferred to protracted court battles, and attorneys could assist in negotiating a settlement that will obviate the need for a judge to make the decision.

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