Pennsylvania parents who ending their marriage may be concerned about the impact of the divorce on their children. There are a number of steps parents can take to make a divorce go more smoothly in this regard.
Parents should keep in mind that children may be shocked by the news of the divorce even if they have openly not been getting along. It is important to reassure children that the divorce is not their fault. They may struggle with their feelings about the divorce in different ways, and reassuring them while allowing them to experience whatever emotions they are feeling without judgment is helpful.
Children also need to be told by both parents that they are unconditionally loved. As a corollary to this, it is important that neither parent say negative things about the other one in front of the children. Children should also not be questioned about the other parent’s lifestyle. It is critical that parents find a way to co-parent. They do not necessarily have to get along, but they need to be able to work together to raise their children and find compromises in that area.
Some parents may want to look into a collaborative divorce or mediation. Some studies have shown that divorces that are settled in this way may result in a better relationship between parents after the divorce. Unlike litigation, which is oriented more toward a winner and a loser, the goal of mediation is for both parties to reach a solution that satisfies them. When children are involved, it can also be a solution that best suits the child’s personality and wishes. Parents who are in this situation may want to ask their respective family law attorneys if the mediation process would be appropriate.