Divorce will be difficult for your children. However, a healthy divorce can turn out to be much better for kids than a lousy marriage.
Kids suffer when their parents argue or fight. Even if you keep your emotions in check, your kids will notice when you are happy or unhappy. So if divorce calms parental conflict and leads to two happier but separate parents, then life post-divorce could well turn out better for all.
That may take time
Divorce will not change your lives for the better overnight. There will be ups and downs along the way for you and the kids. Much of that will come from the inevitable changes and disruption to life as they knew it. The more you can do as parents to keep the ship on a steady course, the less stressful it will be for your kids. For example:
- Try to agree on things: It might seem a big ask to agree with someone you disagreed with enough to divorce. Yet, it will make things simpler. For starters, agree that it is better for everyone if you divorce. If you accept that marriages do not always work out, it can help remove the feelings of guilt, shame or anger that prolong so many divorces.
- Put the children first: Let’s say your youngest child is 10 years old. You still need to work together as parents for at least 8 years. How easy or difficult those years are is up to you. If you both use “What is best for the kids?” as your guide to decision-making, it will help you make good choices.
Mediating your divorce sets a positive tone for the road ahead. Showing your child that you, as parents, can still work together helps them understand that while life will be different than before, it will work out alright.