North Carolina parents who are ending their marriage should communicate with their children about an impending divorce. Children will know that something is wrong, and talking to them about it gives them the opportunity to ask questions and express their fears. This is also a good time for parents to reassure their children that they are not responsible for the situation and that their parents will still be there for them. Parents should try to present a unified front for their children, and if children do not talk about the divorce, parents should ask them how they are feeling about it.
How parents behave with one another is important as well. They should not denigrate one another when the children are around, and they should not use the children as messengers or as a way to manipulate each other. Flexibility is important in avoiding conflict during this time. Things may be chaotic sometimes, and this could lead to missed appointments and issues with pickups and drop offs. As long as these things are not happening regularly, it is better to let them go.
Children may be grieving, and this might be expressed in a number of different ways. Some may benefit from talking to a therapist. Parents should not neglect their own self-care either. Their needs must be met so they can meet their children’s.
Child custody and visitation are emotional issues, and even when parents are focused on the best interests of their children, they may forget how important it is for children to maintain a relationship with both of them. Parents might want to consider joint custody or at least ensure that the noncustodial parent has a significant amount of visitation time. In most cases, an arrangement of this nature is better for children than one in which children spent most of their time with only one parent.