Look To the Western Sky

A blog about single life as a parent & the dreams of a writer by Margo L. Dill

Tag: Kids in Divorce

Tips for an Amicable Divorce or Break-Up

(contributed post)

All adults should refrain from point-scoring and acting like children when they reach the end of their relationships. Nobody wants a messy breakup because that will cause a lot of hassle and headaches. The situation is even worse when there are kids involved, and so it makes sense to take a friendly approach. The tips on this page will show you how to end your relationship and ensure everyone gets a fair deal. Use this information to limit the amount of time it takes to find solutions and guarantee nobody leaves the relationship feeling ripped off or downtrodden. If you do that, you could have everything sorted within a couple of months.

Start divorce proceedings straight away

The first thing you need to do is contact a reputable family lawyer and start divorce proceedings straight away. There are specialists in every city that deal with everything from divorce resolution to custody battles. Explain the situation to your legal representatives, and instruct them to start the ball rolling as soon as possible. You have no time to waste, and any delays will increase the chances of arguments in your household. Make sure both parties agree to sign all the documents and refrain from placing stumbling blocks in the way of the legal teams.

Agree on lists of personal possessions

Splitting your possessions is often the most challenging aspect of relationship breakups. If you can prove that you paid for something, and you have access to the receipts, place that item on your list. Instruct your ex-partner to do the same thing, and then compare. Hopefully, you will both take a fair approach. If there are items in dispute, mention them to your legal team and ask them to come up with a solution that benefits both parties.

Refrain from talking about the breakup at home

There are times and places to talk about your relationship breakup, and your home isn’t one of them. That is especially the case if you have children who might become stressed or upset. Ensure you only discuss matters related to your divorce through your lawyers for the best outcomes. Don’t try to start arguments in the house, and they might escalate into problems that will prolong the breakup. If you remember to do that, there is a reasonable chance you can find some fair solutions and get everything over and done with in a couple of months.

The suggestions and advice on this page can help ease stress at the end of a relationship. Remember, you loved your ex-partner once; and even though you now have issues, it’s sensible to remember that fact and treat them with respect. That may encourage your former partner to do the same thing.

 

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Tips for Helping Your Children Deal with Divorce and Breakups

This article was contributed, but man, it is good. It hits home, and I especially like the paragraph that I highlighted with my Practical Moms Unite logo. Since my daughter did have to live through a divorce and my ex-husband and I share custody, I know how important and difficult the points in this post are! I hope it helps someone else, too. 

Sometimes relationships don’t work, and that’s part of life. However, when there are children involved, things can become messy and out of control faster than you’d like to think. It’s important to be able to create a relationship with your former spouse or partner, so that you can co-parent your children like you have been doing, but just not living together. Unfortunately, too many people don’t protect their children from the problems they are having within their relationships, and this can have a very negative effect on them. Co-parenting can be difficult, but children shouldn’t have to suffer through endless arguments between their parents. When all is said and done,  the only important thing is that they are healthy, happy, and thriving children. Here’s how you can get through the struggles of co-parenting, so your children can thrive.

If you were married to the co-parent, then things can become a little more difficult than if you weren’t because of divorce proceedings and dividing what you’ve built together in a fair way, so that there are no arguments. You will also have to check what rules there are with the best divorce lawyer so that both of you are clear on what should be done.

It’s also likely that when the time comes to tell your children that you are no longer going to be together, they will be upset. Unfortunately, there isn’t a way out of this, but there are ways in which you can break the news to them more gently and avoid them feeling like their whole world is falling apart. Here are some things that you can consider doing:

  • Rather than simply moving out or having your partner move out, prepare your children for the move first, so it’s not such a shock to wake up one morning and have one of their parents no longer living with them. It might be difficult for the two of you to be around each other, and that’s understandable, but it’s the kindest thing to do for the sake of your children.
  • Speaking to your children in an age-appropriate way about what’s happening before making any decisions or changes in their lives will make the whole process much more smooth for them as they will understand the changes they are experiencing.
  • It’s always best to explain that even though their parents aren’t together anymore, the love that you have for them won’t change and that they are the most important thing in both of your lives. This always seems like an obvious thing to say, but if left unsaid, it can leave your children feeling or wondering like any of this is their fault. Make sure they know that they haven’t done anything.

Obviously each family has their own problems, and dealing with something like a break up isn’t going to be the same for everyone.

The next thing that you will need to think about is the time they will spend with you vs the time they will spend with the co-parent. Come to an agreement that allows your children to know exactly when they are going to be with you, and when they are going to be with their other parent.

Letting your children have some decision making is always a good idea, so they don’t feel like they are losing all control. For example, when the transition of moving out is happening, allow your children to choose things to take to their other home You need to try and remember that it’s not just you and your ex dealing with the break up, it’s the children too, so if they need some comfort by taking a toy or comforter between each home then that shouldn’t be stopped.

Having to let your children go to their other parents’ home for a few days will be difficult! Since they were born, you may not have known a day without them. It will be heartbreaking to watch them as they go off happily, or if they don’t go off happily, that will hurt too. A great way to help diffuse the situation for both you and your children is to set up times where they can call you to tell you about their day or even something simple like saying good night.

Once you and your co-parent are no longer living together, decision making can become a tricky situation, especially if you are both disagreeing on something. Try to set up some sort of arrangement, where if there are decisions that involve your children to be made, you either meet or have a conversation on the phone. Many co-parents make the mistake of just making a decision without the other’s input, which then leads to arguments that could affect your children. On the other hand, there will be times where you disagree and you argue, but this should always be done in private, so your children don’t have to see their parents screaming and shouting at each other.

Relationship breakdowns are hard and are an emotional time for everyone that’s involved. Try to keep your composure, so you can make the transition as easy as possible for your children because at the end of it all they are the only ones that matter in all of this mess. Co-parenting is hard work; but if you both work with each other rather than against each other, you can make the process a little bit easier on everyone involved.

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Every Time She Leaves

_DSC0354I recently heard someone say that when you become a parent, a little piece of your heart is now living outside your body. Isn’t that the truth? Every time, my daughter leaves to go with her dad, it makes me, well, sick to my stomach. I know she has fun. I know she loves her daddy. I know she misses him. But the transition is tough–she often says things like, “I don’t want to be without you, Mommy.” She’s not choosing me over him; she’s just stating how much it sucks in her little Kindergarten world that she cannot be with her mommy when she wants to.

And that does suck.

I was the one who asked for the divorce. I’m not going to get into why. It’s not even important to anyone but the two of us. But I will tell you that although I feel like I made the only decision I could after many struggles, I still doubt being away from my daughter, like I have to be, because I chose to divorce her dad. It is the hardest thing for me–still–and we have been separated since May 2015.

I cope by trying to do things I could not do while she is with me. I try to sleep more. I try to get our house organized. I try to see my friends. I try to plan fun things to do when she comes back. I try to remember that she needs me to set boundaries and discipline her when we are together, even though I want to make every moment precious.

I’m a lucky mom. I have a healthy, vibrant, strong-willed, beautiful little girl, and I have to trust that I have made the best decisions I could make for her, regardless of what anyone else thinks. And when I miss her–I am lucky that I can call her or Skype with her, and that we will be together again soon.

It’s not easy to stay positive. But that’s how I make it through…every time she leaves.

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