Involved in a custody fight? You are not alone. Your children are also going through a lot of stress as they cope with the divorce. Some parents seem to forget this. They think their divorce is only stressful for them, but what about the kids? Can’t you see they are hurting too? As they become the center of a custody battle, kids undergo a profound emotional transformation.
From the moment their parents’ relationship starts to deteriorate to the point when child custody is awarded, children of divorce go through a wide variety of emotions. These emotional changes can reach levels of concern as parents engage in a long and stressful custody battle. While the custody battle goes on, kids might feel like another piece of property that has to be awarded to either one of their parents. The most common issue affecting children is that often they feel as if they were the cause of their parents’ divorce. This feeling of guilt results in kids experiencing anxiety, fear, anger or depression.
A child custody and visitation schedule agreement is a great mechanism to reduce the emotional impact of a divorce or separation upon children. After a divorce, your kids will have two homes, possibly two families, and a new different life ahead. How are they going to adapt to these changes? The better you can manage these changes yourself, the better your children can adapt, too.
The most conflictive, adversary and hostile a divorce process is, in or out of court, the more likely the children are to suffer trauma and exhibit future behavioral problems. A child custody and visitation agreement provides the parents with a formidable tool to make the children’s transition smoother. If the parents can avoid a custody fight and work together in a custody plan and visitation schedule, the kids will experience less stress, and feel more secure. When neither parent can reach a fair parenting plan, the court will have to decide for you. Once the court issues a custody and visitation order, you are obliged to comply with it, or risk being in contempt of court if you do not. Your children need your support more than ever at this point. They need to feel safe and stable. They need to know that you are in control of their future. You can do this by avoiding conflicts during the later stages of your divorce or separation process. You need to let go of your need to blame, punish and control. You must put aside your feelings of anger or loss. Do it not for yourself, but for your children’s welfare.