Divorce can be difficult for everyone. However, making the divorce easier on the children should be the parents’ number one priority. As a family law attorney for over 25 years, Eric C. Cheshire is often asked what steps can be taken to make the divorce easier for the kids. Below are some suggestions to help your family during this difficult time. Parenting time is sacred. At the end of the day, recognizing and supporting your children to love each of their parents, and respecting their given time with the other parent, is a loving gesture and is in the best interest of your child.
Language Is Powerful
Choose your words carefully. Children are sensitive individuals, and they will pick up on your communication – or lack thereof. Make a point to greet the other parent when picking up or dropping off the children. Make sure to appropriately compliment the other parent in front of your children. Say, “You are right” when they are right, even if it may be difficult to do so. Being respectful of the other parent sends a message to your children. Being disrespectful to the other parent also sends a message. If you are angry about what the other parent did or didn’t do during the marriage, rising above these feelings and demonstrating respect and common decency towards the other parent establishes a healthier situation for your children.
Be Respectful of Parenting Time
Each parent should be respectful of the other parent’s time with the children. Make sure they leave your house in clean clothes, include their school work, and anything else they may need. During your time with the children, do not suggest that they call the other parent to request an extension of time. Do not suggest to your children the other parent has some control over the amount of time you get to spend with them. Do not make comments about how you’d like to see them more, but the other parent won’t allow it. Each of you should make sure the children know, through your words and actions, that you recognize the value of their time with the other parent.
Listen to Your Child
Like most people, your children may not respond well if you shower them with questions the instant they return from the other parent’s house. Instead, give them time to readjust to their circumstances and environment. When your child is ready to talk, they will do so on their own accord. Listen and ask appropriate questions of your child. Note: Your child is not your spy. Ask questions that let them know you hear them and are engaged. Avoid asking questions that appear to be evidence gathering for the divorce hearing or to use against the other parent in some other manner.
If you are considering divorce, or if you have decided to divorce, contact Eric C. Cheshire, P.A. As a marital and family law attorney, Eric Cheshire has experience handling divorce cases for couples and families. If divorce is the next step for your family, Eric C. Cheshire will provide you with compassionate and diligent representation. Contact the office today to schedule a consultation at (561) 295-3693. Let Eric put his experience to work for you.