Getting a divorce is enough of an upheaval to your life, but getting a divorce with kids can be especially challenging. When kids are in the picture, you have more legal hurdles to overcome, plus you have the concerns of how the entire process is affecting them. A difficult divorce doesn’t just impact you; it impacts them too. Here are a few tips for how to make a divorce with kids involved go a little more smoothly in Arizona.
Keep Communication Open
One of the keys to making divorce with kids easier on everyone is ensuring that the lines of communication stay open. This doesn’t mean arguing in front of the kids, but it does mean that kids should be given age appropriate explanations for what’s happening, and contact should be maintained with both parents. It’s difficult, but making sure that kids know what’s going on will help them process their experiences. Also be sure to communicate with them in advance so that they have time to mentally prepare for big events such as moving.
Make Decisions Together
Remember, as parents you will be making decisions together for years to come. It may be especially difficult to do so during a divorce with kids, but if you can come to an agreement on important issues such as your parenting plan, it’ll be better for your divorce and better for your children. As long as your parenting plan is fair and in the best interests of the children, what you and your former partner decide should be approved. Arizona courts prefer to give equal legal decision-making rights to both parents, unless of course there is sufficient reason why doing so would be detrimental to the well-being of the child. Reasons that Arizona courts will give legal decision-making and/or parenting time to one parent include domestic abuse, child abuse, substance abuse, abandonment, or another factor that could put the child in danger.
Get Professional Help
Going through a divorce is difficult enough, but a divorce with kids introduces new levels of complexity into all of the decisions you and your formal partner must make. Don’t feel like you and your partner need to go through all this alone! Navigating the legal and emotional difficulties of a divorce with kids requires a variety of professionals to ensure that no one and nothing gets overlooked. A mediator can help the two of you come to an agreement, both in the dissolution of your marriage and in the future of your children. Legal counsel can ensure that your rights are observed, and can help you fight for the best interests of your child, if necessary. Counseling and therapy can also help you and your children deal with the emotional turmoil of the divorce. The support of family and friends is always helpful, but there are some areas where a professional guide is in your best interests.
Navigating a divorce with kids may seem overwhelming, but it helps to have a professional who is familiar with Arizona family law guide you through the process. Hiring a lawyer doesn’t have to mean the divorce or the parenting plan is contentious, but it does give you peace of mind knowing that your rights are being fairly represented. For more information or to consult with an attorney, contact Simon Law Group, PLLC, today.