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Things for parents to avoid when divorcing

Divorce, like most family law issues, is not just a legal matter but also a matter that can stir up some very strong emotions in everyone involved. Thus, a divorce between parents and the time following such a divorce can be an incredibly emotional time, both for the divorcing parents and their children.

During this often difficult-time, it is very important for parents to be mindful of the fact that how they act can have some major emotional impacts on their children. Parents being properly mindful of how emotionally vulnerable a child can be post-divorce and acting appropriately given this fact may be able to help a divorce be a little less emotionally straining on their children. On the filp-side though, when parents act inappropriately around their children during and after a divorce, they could end up amplifying the emotional turmoil their children experience.

Thus, there are certain things that parents, for the sake of their kids, should generally avoid doing during and after a divorce. Here are some examples of behaviors to avoid:

  • Spoiling the kids.
  • Arguing with the ex around the kids.
  • Bad-mouthing the ex in front of the kids. 
  • Reacting to one's own emotional struggles in a way that hurts the kids, such as leaning heavily on the kids for companionship and emotional healing.
  • Engaging in behavior that creates awkward moments during times when one and one's ex are both with the kids. 

In addition to avoiding certain behaviors around the kids, divorcing parents should also avoid making custody matters tougher on the kids than necessary. Custody disputes/battles can sometimes get intense, so it is important for parents involved in such battles/disputes to do what they can to protect their kids emotionally during such battles/disputes. Divorce attorneys can help divorcing parents try to address custody matters in ways that deal with all the important legal issues but also keep the emotional health of the kids in mind. 

Source: San Angelo Standard-Times, "WTXCG: Dos and Don'ts of divorce," Feb. 16, 2015

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