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Steering clear of emotional damage to your child during a divorce

| May 5, 2016 | Child Custody |

Regardless of who initiates a divorce in Georgia, bitterness and anger may tempt the couple to act in ways that they may regret later. Identifying potential pitfalls early and agreeing to avoid certain behaviors may allow them to work together toward a settlement and parenting plan that benefits them both without litigation. Even more importantly, their ability to sidestep disputes can be a boon to their child during the transition.

According to Psychology Today, there are many ways partners may use their children to attempt to hurt each other. Unfortunately, these may be even more damaging to a child than to the ex-spouse. Criticizing the other parent in front of or to the child is one such activity, as this may cause a feeling that he or she must choose between the parents. This may lead the child to feel disloyal and will mostly likely heighten the sense of conflict. Another tactic that may cause emotional harm to a child is telling him or her about the impending divorce before informing the other spouse of it.

Children need time to process the divorce and adjust to the transition. If one parent is already dating someone new, introducing that romantic interest to the child can cause stress. Psychology Today points out that shielding children from conflict is one of the most important ways to help them adjust. Parents should agree to take whatever steps are necessary to prevent the divorce from exposing their children to undue emotional strain rather than focusing on their own hard feelings. 

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