Children and Divorce

This has been a strange month. No less
than three times I was asked advice about protecting children from
effects of divorce. Once it was grandparents seeking help with the
issue because they were given custody by the court !


As divorce and seperations become more
frequent reality of a changing society, we need to have a clear
knowledge of protecting children from the emotional holocaust.


Many times I see couples who have
decided to go their own ways for their own reasons and want a stable
future for their children. Fact is – no matter how well you do it,
children will have trouble. Afterall they NEED both parents.


We can take some precautions to limit
the damage –


  • Be aware that children KNOW
    something is wrong. Do not keep telling them ” everything is going
    to be alright”. It will just make them more suspicious of you.Tell
    them clearly that things are not going well and it will take a while
    to get everything sorted out.
  • Don’t forget to let them know
    again and again that it is not their fault that you are seperating.
  • When finally you decide to move
    away into different houses, let kids know who goes where.
  • Do not go overboard with your
    promises about time to be spent with them, vacations, pocketmoney,
    etc. Promise only what is definitely possible for you month after
    boring / stressful month. This is very important as parent living
    away feels pressured to promise heaven just to be in kid’s good
    books and then come up with un- believable excuses.
  • Remember that you two have
    difference of opinion and kids have nothing to do with it. If kids
    make some choices, unfavourable to you, don’t hold it against them
  • Do not outsource your childcare
    responsibilities to grandparents / friends/ neighbours / new spouses


If you are the parent living away there
are some important things-


  • Do not undermine decipline of
    their permanent home.
  • Do not waste your breath to talk
    nasty things about your ex-spouse.
  • Do not spoil kids with material
    things and luxuries in whatever little time you get with them.
    Remember they are YOUR kids and whatever damage you do to them, will
    come home after a while.


Some common points-

  • Don’t expect kids to like your new
    partner / spouse straightaway. Do not force them to call your new
    spouse by – daddy / mummy names. It can just mess things up.
    “Aunty / Uncle” is also a no-no. First name is nice and
  • Be aware that kids can take you
    for a ride by telling horror stories about your ex-spouse. Do not
    believe everything they say !!


Now go ahead and enjoy that hard earned

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