Protecting Children from Divorce

Divorce is an ugly thing.  People who were once soul mates parting ways.  At times it can feel as though your entire universe is unraveling and there is nothing you can do to make it stop.  Dividing of possessions and the most valued possession, the children are the two most stressful items to deal with during a divorce.

Custody battles can last months even years.  Remember children are innocent.  They did not ask to be born and they were not able to choose their parents.  Unless in cases of extreme abuse children should never be asked to choose a parent.  Each parent whether you still love that parent or not has a right to take part in raising the children.  While telling tales about the other parent to the child makes the child prefer you for a short period of time, eventually they will resent you for not allowing them to have a relationship with the other parent.  Putting children in the middle of your divorce can cause long term psychological effects, that will interfere with future relationships.  Involve your children as little as possible.  This event is not their fault and they should never be made to feel as such.  Arrange a custody plan that suits both of your schedules and allows for the children to see both sets of parents as much as possible.  Bitter feelings sometimes clouds the judgement of a well meaning parent in looking out for the best interest of their children.  Do not speak ill of the other parent in the presence of the children.  Though you may be angry at your spouse for cheating, you children need not be placed in the middle of such a mess.  Unless the other parent is putting the children’s physical and emotional well being in danger, there is no need to be selfish.  Remember if not for the other parent that child would not be here.  Children thrive much better when they have two parents involved in their lives.  Encourage your child to love the other parent.  When exchanging the children do not fight in front of them.  If you can not get along with the other parent long enough to exchange the children, allow another party preferably a grandparent, neighbor, aunt, uncle, etc.  Do not use exchange of the children as a situation to create tension for the other parent.  If the other parent has left the home and immediately moved in with someone else, do not send that person to exchange the children or allow that person to be present.  This creates tension and strife.  Children do not deserve the carry the boulder for the parents fights and battles.  Children have a hard enough time readjusting to their family being split.  They do not need more of a burden to carry.  No matter how good it makes you feel to fight with the other parent, do remember to love your children, more than you hate your ex.  Their needs far outweigh yours.  Set an example.

Once a visitation plan is put into order, do attempt to be flexible with it.  Perhaps dad has a family renunion on Saturday and would like the children to attend.  Work out a plan to switch a day or something of the sort.  More than likely dad will remember this favor and be more flexible if you need a switch down the road.  Getting along is key with children, even long after the divoce.  There are many events the two of you will attend for the children at the same time.  Though you no longer have to love or even like that other person, share the joy and accomplishments of your children.

Beyond this there are petty things the other parent sometimes likes to pull on the other parent to cause them hurt through their child.  Do not do these things.  Many parents file false reports of abuse, molestation, and even convince the child to lie for their own selfish desires.  This is disgusting and should be considered child abuse all by itself.  Emotional issues are sure to come of this behavior.  Teaching your child to lie to benefit you, only teaches your child to be dishonest to transform life to how they want it to be.  This is not correct and very unrealistic.  While the lie may work this time, eventually it will not.  Children are never a pawn to be used against the other parent.  

Protecting children from divorce is not difficult.  One has to look beyond their own pain, and consider their child’s feelings.  At times it will be unavoidable to involve them.  Many times however, it is not necessary to involve the child.  Remember unconditional love.  Your child is hurting as much if not more than you.  Be supportive, stick together, and talk about your child’s feelings.