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Will your divorce impact the mental health of your children?

For many kids, a significant negative event during childhood can have an effect on them for the rest of their lives. In some cases, this could mean that their parents’ divorce will harm the mental and emotional health of their children, even years or decades after the process is final. As a parent, you will want to ensure that you approach your divorce in a way that does not cause unnecessary or preventable duress and harm to your children.

Protecting the mental and emotional well-being of your children during your divorce is an important priority. It is critical that you focus on what your children need, even if it means setting aside your own temporary emotions for the moment. An important aspect of helping your children during this time of change and transition is establishing a parenting plan that allows them to have stability and security for years to come.

Steps to good mental health during divorce

While you cannot guarantee that your kids will react in a certain way to your divorce, there are things you can do that will provide them with support, offer them a healthy way to deal with their emotions, provide certainty, and lay the foundation for a strong future. Some of these important steps include:

  • Talk to your children about what they are experiencing, and allow them to talk to you.
  • Connect your children with a therapist or counselor who can provide emotional support.
  • Don’t force their loyalty or make them feel as if they need to pick sides.
  • Establish healthy boundaries for yourself and your children.
  • Provide good emotional regulation for your children and model respect for the other parent.

The decisions you make during your divorce matter, but so does the way that you act and react. Your actions and focus will significantly influence the ways that your divorce impact the mental and emotional health of your children.

A focus on the future

If you want to protect the mental and emotional health of your children during your divorce, a positive step toward that goal is to prioritize their needs above your own temporary feelings. When discussing custody and visitation matters, you may benefit from having guidance regarding the specific ways you can develop a plan that will provide stability and security. A New Jersey divorce is difficult, but it does not have to create more strife for your children or have negative permanent effects.