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Dealing with the aftermath of divorce

At times, for whatever reasons, a marriage stops working. When that happens, couples turn to the divorce process -- with their children in tow. Because divorce is often linked with mixed and extreme emotions, it can create challenges for the family as a whole. It can generate stress and anxiety that affects not only the divorcing couples, but their children as well. Therefore, parents who are considering divorce should be ready to help their children cope with the changes in the family dynamics.

First, children often blame themselves for the divorce and parents must make sure they realize that they are not to blame. Also, the divorce process can make the children feel as though they are being abandoned and both parents must assure them that they are still committed to raising them. It is also a good idea to remind children, by praising them, of how special they are.

Parents may also expect a sudden change in their children's behavior due to the stress of the divorce process. When they see this happening, parents should just let their children be. After all the stress is released, the children will come to understand the situation and become cooperative.

Finally, children sometimes become uncomfortable about expressing their feelings. Parents should be attentive to children's moods and seek to determine how they are doing, especially with respect to child custody and visitation issues.

The divorce process, whether in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, or elsewhere in the country, can go smoothly when parties are able to cooperate for the sake of their children. With the right help, couples can craft agreements that help their family move forward from the divorce. In these cases, couples can become successful co-parents and avoid unnecessary stress on their children.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Emotions After Divorce," Dr. Peggy Kruger Tietz, July 10, 2013

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