Putting Children First After Divorce

Posted by Luisa-Maria Maroun on 11 June 2015

There are no winners in the breakdown of a family unit and sadly, it is often  children who bear the consequences of the lingering resentment between their parents.  Sometimes parents can get so caught up in their own anger that they forget that a child needs both parents equally in their life.  Parents need to learn how to co-parent effectively if they wish to minimize the effects of the separation on the children to the relationship. 

Parenting is not easy at the best of times, however you may wish to consider the following tips in your efforts to achieve successful co-parenting:-

  • Encourage your children to love and respect the other parent;
  • Be flexible and willing to compromise with the other parent for the benefit of your children;
  • Avoid speaking negatively about the other parent in the presence of your children.  Remember, children are like sponges and often repeat everything that is said to them.  Try to speak positively about the other parent to your children, as this will make the adjustment period much easier;
  • Communicate directly with the other parent as opposed to using the children as an avenue through which to relay messages to the other parent.  This places an unnecessary burden on the children;  and
  • Remember to stay child focused and to always put your children's interests before your own.

Children of all ages can have problems coming to terms with their new family unit, especially as they are often required to travel between homes and at times, need to  adjust and get used to a new step-family.  An independent expert can help a child to express their feelings as quite often, they are hesitant to  confide in either their mother or father about the change in their lives. 

Two primary rules to remember and follow:-

  •  Do not burden your children with situations they cannot control;  and
  •  Do not ask your children to deal with adult issues.

Parenting arrangements can be put in place without having to resort to going to Court.  Parenting plans are generally a much quicker and far more amicable way of ensuring that children have regular contact with both parents.  Our experienced solicitors are able to assist you with the preparation and implementation of a Parenting Plan.   The engagement of a solicitor can often take the heat out of negotiations between parents and help ensure that the parents and, more importantly, the children, are not exposed to Court proceedings.