Keeping a Happy Family Post Divorce
Getting a divorce is challenging enough as it is. There is hardly a harder process that any family can go through, no matter the age of the family members. Luckily, there are a few things that you can do to make the transition through a divorce and life after a divorce a little easier.
Keep Paperwork Organized
Having the proper paperwork in order is key to having a divorce run as smoothly as possible. If you have children, how they are taken care of post divorce will be outlined in the divorce paperwork. This includes who gets custody and how it works. Since these documents are so important, it's best that you keep this paperwork as organized as possible.
If you are using digital files, then you can benefit from using legal case management software. If you are using hard copies, store them in a folder and keep them out of reach of children. Invest in a fireproof safe if you can. If you do not have one of these, then simply storing the papers in a locking desk drawer or file cabinet will get the job done. Ideally, you should have both hard and digital copies of your paperwork so you always have backups.
Be Friendly Around the Children
Getting a divorce is hard on everyone in the family, especially on any young children involved. Even if the parents in the family do not get along, it is best that they do not argue in front of the children. Even if the parents do not yell at the children, or otherwise involve them in the argument, children can still be negatively affected by witnessing arguing.
What happens to a child when they witness arguing? Not only can it cause children to be stressed out in the short term, but it can have long term effects on their mental health. It can cause children to develop anxiety or depression. On the other end of the spectrum, children might "learn" that arguing is okay and become hostile at school or when otherwise outside of the house.
Stick to Custody Agreements
Children need stability in their lives. Making sure both parents stick to their agreed-upon custody agreement whenever possible. There is no guarantee that a child will like a custody agreement. However, they are likely to get used to it over time. So, while it may be tricky to get started sticking to the agreement, the faster you learn to stick to the rules, the faster your children will get used to them.
Carefully Introduce New Romantic Interests
Eventually, it's likely that the parents will begin to date again, if they haven't already before the divorce is officially finalized. While there is no right or wrong way to introduce a new romantic partner to children, there are some things parents can do to make the introduction go smoothly and less awkwardly. One thing that can be done to reduce some awkwardness and potential problems is talking to the child's other parent first about the situation. If they are uncomfortable with their child meeting a new potential partner, it may lead to complications later on.
Generally speaking, it is best to wait a while before introducing children to a new partner. Parents should wait until their new romantic relationship is steady and seems like a thing that will last before they bother introducing their children to their new partner. This way, parents can avoid having their children become attached to people who will not stick around.
Divorce is tricky and heartbreaking, not just for the parents but for the children involved. However, by keeping these few tips in mind, you can make the transition from a nuclear family to a split family easier. If both parents can be civil toward each other and their children, then there is no reason why anything has to go poorly.