Divorce is never easy, but it can be incredibly tough when kids are involved. Often when parents are thinking of getting a divorce, they normal think about what age is the best for their kids. But whilst there is no magic number sometimes considering your kid’s age is a valid thing. But no matter how old/mature your kid is, it can still affect them.
Of course, no one expects their marriage to end in divorce, but it does happen, and it will affect your kid even if they are too small to talk about it. In the US there are about 1 in 5 marriages that end by their 5th anniversary and 1 in 2 ends by the 20th anniversary. It doesn’t matter if it’s friendly, furious or a relief after years of struggling, divorce can bring major changes to your kid’s lives.
What Young Children Need
If you are divorcing with young children involved, then the most important thing that you can do is make sure that your kid knows that you will be there for them, no matter what. Knowing that your parents will still love you just the same is all that a kid will care about, they want to feel loved and cherished. So, this is a really important thing that you should make sure to do.
If you have a young baby, then did you also realise that babies as young as 3 months old are affected by the parent’s emotions. So, if you are fighting and bickering with your soon to be ex, or are feeling anxious or sad, then your young baby will know that something isn’t right. So, try and avoid fighting with each other when you can. Remember that a divorce is often the healthy and right thing to do, but a young kid might not understand why change is happening.
What to Expect
You can never know exactly what will happen, but many couples who have divorced with kids will be able to tell you that children may experiences changes in behaviour in the year following the divorce. Your kid might be happy and engaged during some parts of the day, but also sad, angry even depressed at other times.
As a parent going through a divorce, you might find it hard to see that your child is sad and not know what to do, particularly as you might be going through your own difficult emotions, but it’s important that you make sure that you are there for your child. If you have a baby, although they cannot talk, they might be crying a lot more, a young child might have more nightmares, but just make sure that you are there for them.
What you Can Do
When you are going through the divorce, make sure you have a good attorney (such as this divorce attorney fort collins has to offer), as they can help reduce the amount of stress you might be dealing with. Let them deal with all the legal things, and you can focus on your family and making sure that you are just there for them and don’t go about your divorce alone, otherwise you’ll get stressed and feel anxious, and your child will see this.
If your child sees that you are upset, they will also start to feel upset. If you start complaining about your ex to your child, then they might have conflicting emotions. You need to be able to communicate about your ex without being mean, that is still their parent after all. Just remember to be there for your child though and let them be a kid at the end of the day. If they are sad, let them be sad, but also be there for them when they need you.
If you also create a good routine then that will also help your child feel safe, particularly as the world is changing in huge ways around them. If you can, make sure that they have the same routine in both parent’s home. This is why you should try and co-parent, make sure you are civil with one another. These are only a few things that you need to think about, check out this article here for what else you need to consider during a divorce when kids are involved!