Divorce is never easy. When two people decide to go their separate ways, it can have a ripple effect on everyone in their lives – especially their children. No one feels a couple’s divorce more profoundly than their children. The children still love both parents and usually do not want to live apart from them.
As such, parents often worry about how the divorce will impact their children and what they can do to make things easier. How can you reduce the impact on your kids? What can you do to help the transition to two homes?
During a divorce, it is common for children to feel a range of emotions, such as sadness, confusion, anger, or even guilt. These emotions can be overwhelming and may affect their school performance, relationships, and long-term psychological health. However, by understanding and addressing these challenges, parents can help their children navigate the emotional aspects of divorce and provide the necessary support to help them cope.
A Houston divorce attorney can be a valuable resource for parents during this challenging process. A divorce attorney can guide parents on matters related to child custody, visitation, and support, ensuring that children’s needs are prioritized throughout the legal proceedings.
From effective communication to minimizing conflict, co-parenting, recognizing emotional needs, and legal considerations, parents must learn to navigate their children through this difficult time.
When parents divorce, children often experience a wide range of emotions. Children may feel profound sadness and loss due to changes in their family unit. Young children may also struggle to understand the reasons behind it. This can trigger fear and anxiety in children, primarily related to their sense of stability and security. They may worry about where they will live, where they will go to school, how they will spend holidays, and who will take care of them.
Children often blame themselves for their parent’s separation. They may feel guilty, believing their behavior or actions caused the divorce. They may also resent one or both parents, blaming them for the family breakup.
All of these emotions are normal and expected during a divorce. However, unresolved emotional issues resulting from divorce can affect children more than parents realize. Children who do not receive adequate support to address their emotional needs during and after divorce may be at a higher risk of developing educational, emotional, and psychological difficulties. This includes depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and difficulties forming and maintaining relationships. They may also have trouble concentrating in school, have lower grades, exhibit disruptive behavior, or withdraw socially.
Divorce is undoubtedly a stressful and emotionally draining time for you. However, it is important to keep your kids in mind as you navigate through the divorce process.
The best thing you can do to help your children during the divorce is to take care of yourself and seek professional help. Parents who go through therapy and surround themselves with a solid support system will be able to help their own children through the emotional aspects of divorce. Think of it as “putting your own oxygen mask on first in an airplane.”
The next best thing you can do for your children is to maintain open and honest communication. Honest communication helps children feel safe and secure, knowing they can rely on their parents for accurate information and support. It allows children to have a voice and be part of the process. It gives them a sense of control over their emotions and the tools they need to adapt to the changes. When you create an open line of communication with your child, you can minimize their anxiety and confusion while teaching them the importance of expressing feelings and resolving conflicts constructively.
When children are going through a divorce, they may have concerns and questions. Don’t brush them off or avoid them, even if they’re difficult to answer. Here are strategies for addressing them:
Conflict between parents during and after divorce can significantly impact children’s emotional well-being. High levels of conflict create emotional distress for children, causing anxiety, stress, and feelings of insecurity. Witnessing constant arguments or hostility between parents can be traumatic for children and affect their mental health.
Minimize conflict between you and your ex by basing decisions on their needs and well-being, not on past grievances or animosity. Develop a comprehensive parenting plan outlining visitation schedules, decision-making responsibilities, and resolution guidelines. Having a plan in place reduces ambiguity and potential disagreements. In cases of high conflict, consider involving a mediator or a family therapist to help facilitate discussions and find solutions that prioritize the children’s well-being.
Most people don’t realize their divorce attorney can help them support their children during a divorce. Divorce attorneys prioritize the well-being and best interests of children. They advocate for children’s rights, ensuring their voices are heard, and their needs are met throughout the legal process. They help parents navigate child custody and visitation issues and assist in establishing appropriate custody arrangements.
Houston divorce attorneys can refer parents and children to qualified therapists and mental health professionals who specialize in working with children of divorced families. Attorneys and therapists can participate in joint meetings with parents and the child when appropriate and beneficial. These meetings allow all professionals to share insights, exchange information, and develop coordinated plans for the child’s support and well-being.
Your divorce attorney can also collaborate with therapists and mental health professionals in decision-making, such as custody arrangements or parenting plans. By integrating the insights and recommendations of therapists, attorneys can help parents and the court make decisions that prioritize the child’s emotional needs. Together, the courts, your attorney, and therapists can help to develop coordinated support plans for the child and the parents. This may include strategies for effective co-parenting, communication guidelines, or recommendations for therapeutic interventions that support the child’s emotional well-being.
Are you going through a divorce in Texas and concerned about the emotional well-being of your children? At Moving Forward Divorce Lawyers, our family law attorneys understand the importance of supporting children through this challenging process. Our team is dedicated to advocating for the best interests of your children and providing comprehensive guidance and assistance.
We know that divorce is never easy. However, our lawyers strive to make it as easy as possible for you and your children so that you can move forward into your future. Call us at 713-589-4748 or fill out our confidential contact form to learn more about your legal options
Thomas H. Smith III was born and raised in Arlington, Texas. He graduated from Texas A&M University in 2002 with a degree in Chemistry and a minor in Mathematics. He then attended the University of Houston Law Center where he served as an Articles Editor for the Houston Journal of International Law. Read more here.
You should seek the assistance of an experienced Texas family attorney who is familiar with the laws and can fight on your behalf for the things you want out of your divorce.
It is always a good idea to consult with an experienced Houston divorce attorney at Moving Forward Divorce Lawyers when going through a divorce. Filing the right paperwork and petitioning the court takes time, experience, and skill. If you make a mistake, you will lose money and valuable time. This could impact your future significantly. Call us at 713-589-4748 or fill out our confidential contact form to schedule a free consultation and learn more about your legal options.