How you can make divorce easier on your kids

by | May 1, 2023 | Children, Divorce

The number one predictor of whether children fare well after a divorce or not is whether a divorce is a “high conflict” divorce.  A high-conflict divorce is one that is marked by conflict for the sake of conflict; preoccupation with assigning blame, being “right,” and winning at all costs; and manipulation or even outright abuse.  When someone has a high-conflict personality, they will not think twice about using the children to get what they want, even at a cost to the children.  When children experience a high-conflict divorce, they are more likely to have substance abuse problems and experience mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety, and less likely to finish college or have children of their own.

The first way to make a divorce easier on the kids is to leave them out of it!  Do not involve your children in adult matters, either directly or indirectly.  You may think that your children are not listening to your conversations with other adults or do not understand, but they are and they do. Do not use your children as messengers and try to avoid arguing in front of them.

The second way is to get some advice on how to have age-appropriate discussions with your kids about the divorce.  Both Mobile and Baldwin Counties require parents to participate in a class about helping children cope with divorce, so you can get some helpful tips there.  You could also seek the advice of their school counselor or a therapist who works with children.

Lastly, always remind your children that they are not the cause of the divorce, that you love them and that will not change, even if you and the other parent have two different households.  This may seem obvious, but divorce is hard and the stress can sometimes make you lose sight of what is most important – your children.