Deciding to end your marriage is a major life changing moment. Spouses will spend the next several months fighting about who did what wrong. They are angry and a lot of the time will make it their life’s purpose to see just how miserable they can make each other. They’ll argue over who gets what property and who owes who money.
The problem is it’s the children who get forgotten in this process. Their entire world has just been rocked. Their lives turned upside down. Instead of being loved and protected when they need it most, they are used as pawns in their parent’s games. When parents are fighting over custody issues and child support they should be trying to figure out how to handle it in a way that is best for the children.
At the time their parents are trying to see who can be the nastiest, the children are trying to cope with the loss of having both parents with them full time. During these drama infested months, the kids take a back seat to their parent’s feelings and actions. Yet this is when the children need their parents the most.
Every part of these children’s lives has been torn apart by the two people in the world who were supposed to look out for them. If the parents don’t want to be married to one another, that’s between them, but they should always put the children’s needs first. They shouldn’t have to suffer any more than necessary.
The particulars of the divorce should not be discussed in front of the kids. They love both of their parents equally. There is absolutely no reason for the child to know one parent hates their other parent. They don’t need to be exposed to all of the marital dirty laundry. They don’t need to listen to the name calling or the finger pointing.
More importantly, they don’t need their parents trying to ruin their relationship with each other. Nothing good ever comes from trying to turn a child against a parent. It may make the parent feel better, but the damage being done to the child will lead to long term emotional baggage. This baggage will be a heavy burden to carry around until the day comes when they have to deal with it.
Going through a divorce is a difficult situation for everyone involved. It’s up to the adults in the family to work together to ensure the smoothest transition for the child as possible. If you want to hate each other and see who can damage whose life the most, have at it. Just do it privately, your children deserve at least that much.
If your marriage is struggling and marriage counseling is something you feel would help you and your spouse, try the Austin Family Institute. “Austin Family Institute, a marriage and family training program, provides all counseling on a sliding scale fee, making it affordable for everyone.” Visit their website or contact them at 512-329-6611.
Follow Kelly on Facebook and Twitter (KCozzone). Want instant notification of future articles; click Subscribe at the top of the page. Contact Kelly with questions, comments and article ideas at [email protected] Visit Kelly’s website HERE. Find other articles by Kelly HERE. Find Kelly’s new column, family and parenting HERE.
©Kelly Cozzone, All Rights Reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced without prior permissions from the author or Clarity Digital Group LLC d/b/a joltleft.com.