On your wedding day, you never think that you and the love of your life, your soul mate, your partner in crime will ever get divorced; however, as you get older, things change, people change, and divorce becomes a reality. If you have kids, it puts a bigger strain on the divorce, but it’s important to remember that your child always comes first. Unfortunately, divorce brings up a lot of heated emotions, and many parents find themselves making mistakes they’ll soon regret. If you are in thinking about or in the middle of a divorce, here are five mistakes not to make.
Mistake #1: Talking Bad About Each Other
People get divorced for a variety of reasons, and sometimes this makes one parent feel passionately angry towards the other parent. Regardless of what happened or how you feel, you need to remember that the other parent is still a parent of your child, and your child needs to see you and that parent getting along and being respectful. Speaking bad about the other parent or trying to put your child in the middle as a spy will only turn out to cause problems, and this could also be stressful for your child and make them lose respect for you. If you really want to talk about your feelings, it’s better to do so with the help of a counselor.
Mistake #2: Being Greedy
Obviously your child is your whole world, and the last thing you want to do is lose time with that child. However, divorce means having to allow your child to spend time with each parent, which means you need to give up some of that time with your child to the other parent. During the divorce proceedings, you may try to take out your feelings towards your ex by trying to fight for sole custody or trying to limit the amount of time they have with the child. Although you may feel some initial satisfaction from this, remember that it’s only doing your child harm not to spend time with both parents, so don’t be greedy just to stick it to your ex.
Mistake #3: Avoiding Legalities
If you have an amicable divorce, you may try to decide things like visitation or child support arrangements on your own; however, this creates plenty of loopholes that can come back to be a problem in the future. In fact, according to Raleigh lawyers Marshall & Taylor LLC, “child support arrangements can become difficult even after the divorce is finalized.” Even if you don’t want to go through the hassle of court, you can always opt for mediation to try and settle your situation in the best way. This not only allows you to do things more amicably, but it’s also legally binding, which keeps both you and your ex protected should you need it.
Mistake #4: Internalizing
As an adult, you take on a lot of responsibilities and stresses, and divorce will only add to that. Even if you feel as if the divorce isn’t affecting you, it may just not be something you’re noticing. Be sure that you are not internalizing your feelings and instead are seeking the help you need to make this smoother on you. If this requires you to seek professional counseling, then do so. If you need to ask friends or family members for assistance, then do so. Nobody is expecting you to walk away from this divorce without a struggle, and asking for help is better for you and your child.
Mistake #5: Hiding it
Your child may not need to know the gory details about your divorce, but you don’t need to try and pretend that everything is fine if it’s not. Once you and your ex decide that divorce is the option you’re going with, you need to talk with your child about. Explain why you are getting divorced and what will happen in the future. Be sure to constantly reinforce the divorce is not their fault and there’s nothing they could do to make it work. Be sure to explain that they will still see both parents and what changes, if any, will happen in their life, such as if they will be moving, going to a new school, etc. Keep in mind that divorce can be stressful on your child, so be sure you are prepared to have them talk with a professional if it needs to be done.
Nobody wants to go through divorce, especially with kids, but if you do, be sure to avoid these mistakes.