Having seen firsthand a custody battle, I can say with certainty how it feels and looks through a child’s perspective. Once the parents split up into a new life, and there is nothing else to claim.
The focus now becomes the children, even if it is just a cover for adult insecurities. Most adults have a selfish consideration for their own side of the situation, which sometimes has a negative effect on those who can only learn by watching.
I specifically remember how my sister coming back from a parental visit with dirty socks turned into a war with the accusation towards a lack of child vigilance. You question the motives of one another, and you find influencing the children against the other is the best answer.
In many situations, good judgement is not at the forefront and, in most cases, has left the building entirely. So, how do the children figure once the gavel has come down in a divorce?
Once a happy ending does not end happy, and your prince charming turns into the devil’s own, it can get tough. When managing children in the mix, it can become beyond difficult. The love poems turn into criticism, and the romance has left him in a bad mood. This sight unseen will surely take your view of him to the next level, but do not let it take your spirit.
- The pivoting role of a father can be confusing to a child. Make no mistakes about it, and he still loves them just as you have seen him before. Always make sure you tell the kids that, never badmouth the other. You never want them to think the cause of the breakup has anything to do with them.
- Kids often bring a more defensive side out. If you notice some parents seem to get overwhelmed when it comes to their kids. So, remember to share the responsibilities and create a list of priorities that you agree on. Discipline and the needs of a child will certainly change over time, coordinate with one another in some way to keep up with adjustments.
- Do not let presumptions get the better of you. Create a parenting plan before presumptions turn legal for the best interest of the children. Allocate the time for visits and know when a mediator needs to get involved. This will allow for equal footing and make everyone’s life much easier.
Opposite from you, he does not think of your efforts as shielding the children, he thinks of you as harming them. Women are often thought of as more vindictive and problem causing in the greater sense so, stay out of that category. Do not focus on her as the ex-wife; see passed to the caring mother that she is.
- Always think about the kids as a priority and let go of the small stuff. The formula for a cohesive style of parenting is equal, even if the rights belong to the other parent. If or when it comes to a court order, follow it. Try to always be appropriate and agreeable to show you are consistent.
- While mannerisms have changed, try to be civil. Do not divide the child between the other. You want the kids to know a loving side, not the blatant reality. Cover their eyes and ears when it comes to the uglier side of the divorce. As children grow, they will always see the truth of the situation, so let them discover that for themselves.
- Never let them get you down. The trauma of Lawyers, attorneys, and the grandparents can harm the children as they are more intuitive than you may think. Respectful and level headed thinking can put you in the proper aspect of a nasty process. Always think of what the kids will benefit from in the end.
When in-laws collide with the principles you have set forth, it can be a thorn in the rose. Entitlements of a grandparent only come in once a parent is no longer able or deceased. So, when their voices are louder than yours, put them in their place. Come to an agreement that is better than the alternative and make sure everyone is on board.
- Tug of war cheerleaders. It is never bad to have someone on your side, but do not let it get out of hand. A common thread among families is to stick together and make sure everyone is in the know on do’s and don’ts. Let no one be a target for hate, and remember who this really affects.
- Right in the wrong. Grandparents can be wonderful, but they can also do harm. Keep them from making up their own rules for the grandkids. Unanticipated problems will come up when dealing with different sets of adults, so have patience. Children are clever but do not let them choose between families; it can give them the wrong sense of responsibility.
- Keep to your own side of the fence. When it comes to custody and divorce, its best to stay neutral and never speak opinions in front of little ones. Do not become a part of the legalities if you do not have to. Always find solutions that fit everyone, and do not divide because no one wins that fight.
The laws of custodial rights may be different depending on where you live. If there were violence or restraining orders throughout the marriage and divorce, custody issues might need to be worked out in the courts. Do not misunderstand what types of decisions each parent is expected to make without too many complications.
Divorce by itself can make the kids feel at fault, so always clarify the situation. Come together for the sake and welfare of the children and try to come to resolutions before the courts get involved.
Keep them thinking like kids and leave grownup decisions out of their hands. In a perfect world, everyone gets along, but in the real world, we learn to live for our ideal circumstances. Happiness signals the end of hard times, and if the kids are alright, you will be too.
- Chapter 8: No Dirty Sheets- Sexless Marriage - August 10, 2020
- Chapter 7: Dirty Socks Start Fights- Child Custody - July 24, 2020
- Chapter 6: Leather or lace? Who Should Wear The Pants In Marriage - July 14, 2020