New Jersey divorce: Set aside hard feelings to help the kids | Lane & Lane, LLC
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New Jersey divorce: Set aside hard feelings to help the kids

A major misunderstanding about divorce among New Jersey couples is the concept of a clean break and the hope that one can wash their hands of the other spouse. While this may be true for those without kids, parents who divorce are required to co-parent following the split and are likely to see each other on a regular basis. Joint decisions will have to be made and the possibility exists there could be gatherings where both parents are required to attend.

While those can certainly be awkward, it is even worse when the divorced couple remains angry and bitter after the papers are signed. Working through hard feelings and working together as parents offers children the chance to live in a happy home when the time comes for the other parent to have custody. Even though a couple is divorced, in the eyes of the children, they still represent a family unit. Taking the time to stop certain behaviors may help parents get into a regular and less stressful routine.

Attempting to control what goes on in the other parent's house is something mothers often struggle with. Doting moms may feel like they know what's best for their child, and this belief can lead to behaviors that interfere with the time kids spend with their father. While it may seem like the right thing to do, often such behavior can cause tension between the children and other parent, potentially damaging a good relationship.

Also, withholding child support is another behavior that can cause difficulty in co-parenting. One party may be resentful of the money they're required to pay, possibly believing it may not be used in the way it was intended. While that can occur, the majority of the time a parent is using the money in the best interests of the child. Withholding those funds can bring stress to both the parent and child, especially if they are unable to buy groceries or pay rent as a result.

Working together to co-parent helps children adjust to the divorce and the new child custody arrangement. Avoiding certain behaviors offers New Jersey parents the opportunity to appreciate each other for the unique skills they bring to the parent-child relationship and ease the children into their new lives. Divorce can be difficult, but setting aside hard feelings helps children have a positive relationship with both parents.

Source: Huffington Post, "You May Be Divorced, But You're Still a Family," Virginia Gilbert, Aug. 3, 2012

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