Do you know that more than the issue of co-parenting and marriage problems, the one thing that most people don’t realize when a marriage is ending is how the children are analyzing what happened? Forget about them going back and forth between their newly separated parents’ houses. Divorce is so normal these days that it’s actually easy for children to adapt to these new circumstances. But what parents don’t realize is that divorce has a generational impact on the children.
Set aside your feelings for a while. Even though you have your spouse’s guts right now, what’s important is to maintain a friendly and united front when you’re with your children. Nothing shakes their cores more than knowing their parents are bickering nonstop all the time. There is no peace in a household with constantly fighting parents. This should be a cardinal rule in every household.
Talk With Your Spouse About the Children
No one will care more about your children than you and your spouse. Talk to your spouse about your children—how you will explain what happened, how you’re going to spend time with them individually, and how your separation will affect them, their school, and their social lives. You should be the first person to care about your children. While a divorce lawyer will help you manage the intricacies of the separation, you and your spouse should be at the forefront of protecting your children’s rights.
Remember the Court Is Not for Seeking Justice
If you are going to court trying to seek justice, forget about your mission. The court isn’t going to care about how badly hurt you are emotionally. They are going to care about the evidence presented to them. Sure, your heart is broken, and your spouse broke your trust, but what matters is what you and your attorney can prove in court. There are so many elements of winning a case. It depends on the judge’s biases, your attorney’s skills, and your own abilities to remember details of your marriage.
So, when the attorney asks you to settle outside of court, do it. Even if it pains you not to see your spouse being tried in court, do this for the children. No child should ever have to watch their parents facing each other from the other side of the court. A few things in their lives will be worse than that.
Don’t Depend on Strangers
Your attorney, the judge, the jury, and loved ones will have various opinions about your children. Remember that at the end of the day, you and your spouse should have the last say. Are you going to co-parent? Can you co-exist in a co-parenting relationship? What do your children want most of all? Even in the most stressful of situations, no stranger should ever have to decide on something that will impact your children’s lives.
Keep Your Kids Out of Trial
You should avoid going to trial at all costs because your kids might be asked to be on the stand. Their lives will never be the same again. Being asked about marital problems will surely ruin your kids’ perception of marriage and relationships. Don’t put that kind of blinders on them. Swallow your pride and settle your divorce out of court if you have to. As parents, you must protect your kids at all costs.
Don’t Keep the Kids From Their Other Parent
Usually, spouses try to demonize their partners in divorce proceedings. Out of frustration and hate, they try to take the children away from their spouses as punishment. But who is being punished? Will your kids benefit if they don’t see the other parent anymore? Are they going to be happier when they know you kept them from their mother/father?
Ending a marriage does not mean ending one’s relationship with the kids. At the very least, you should understand that whatever issue you have about your spouse should not involve their relationship with the children. If he/she was a bad spouse, does it necessarily mean he/she is also a bad father/mother?
Think of your kids whenever you’re making decisions about your marriage, family, and many other things. When you become parents, a chunk of you belongs to your kids. Sure, you should still have a life outside being a parent but when it comes to protecting your kids, put yourself front and center there. Nothing matters more than making sure they grow up healthy and loved.