Divorce can have a profound effect on children. How their parents handle the divorce and both parent and co-parent can have a big impact on how well (or not) such children live through the experience and the aftermath of divorce. Here are some points for such divorcing parents to consider when it comes to how to act regarding their children and what to avoid:
Children benefit when their divorced parents:
- Have similar rules and disciplinary actions.
- Prevent conflict and never result to any physical/emotional/verbal abuse of any kind.
- Allow contact with grandparents and other extended family to avoid a further sense of loss.
- Have a healthy and respectful method of communication.
- Speak kindly about one another in the presence of the children.
- Allow flexibility with visitation and give adequate notice when the children want to participate in family celebrations, events and special occasions.
- Always keep the children’s routine and activities in mind when planning vacations, etc.
- Provide an itinerary of travel dates, destination and lines of communication available for all parties while on vacation.
Children are harmed when their divorced parents:
- Deny access to the children for anything other than for the safety or well-being of the children.
- Use physical/emotional/verbal abuse of any kind.
- Don’t keep their promises to them.
- Make the children choose between their parents.
- Degrade the other parent in the children’s presence or to the children.
- Ask their children about the other parent’s activities, relationships, etc.
- Involve the children in problems they are having with the other parent.
- Have the children act as spies, messengers or mediators.