Divorce is a complex and emotional process, especially for children. Children are often forced to adjust to a new life without fully understanding the reasons behind the changes. Parents must work together to maintain a stable environment for their children, but sometimes changes in the parenting plan can be overwhelming.
Communication is Key
It is vital to keep your children informed throughout the entire process, especially regarding changes in their parenting plan. Children should be included in the conversation and allowed to ask questions and discuss these issues with their parents without judgment. This will make them feel heard and understood and allow them to feel a sense of control in the situation.
Be Honest and Clear
When discussing changes in the parenting plan, parents must be honest and clear about what is happening. Children often pick up on the tension and emotions of their parents, so it is essential to remain calm and straightforward. Explain the changes age-appropriately and emphasize that both parents still love them and want what is best for them.
Stick to a Routine
Children thrive on routine and structure. Therefore, it is essential to establish a new routine following a change in the parenting plan. This will provide a sense of stability and normalcy for your children. Discuss potential changes with your ex-partner to create a schedule that works for everyone involved and is communicated to family members with enough time to be adapted to.
Seek Professional Support
Divorce and post-divorce issues can be stressful and affect both parents and children. Don't shy away from seeking support from professionals, such as therapists, to help your children adjust. Professional support can be beneficial in guiding children and adults alike to cope and overcome this stressful period.
Encourage Independence and Resilience
Part of preparing your children for a change in the parenting plan is promoting independence and building their resilience. Encourage your children to develop their routines, set goals and build positive relationships outside your family. This will help support their emotional and mental well-being and make a stronger sense of self-reliance.
Protection Without Destruction
Divorce can be challenging, especially with a shared custody arrangement, but parents can help their children adjust and find a new sense of normalcy together.
At Harris, Hunt & Derr, P.A., our family law attorneys can help your family prepare for any necessary parenting plan modifications. Call us today at (813) 223-5421 to schedule a consultation with a member of our team.