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Helping children transition through divorce


Rhode Island residents who are going through a divorce or contemplating going through a divorce are likely being pulled in a million directions. From stressing about multiple family law issues, such as alimony and separation of property, the feelings of the couple's children can sometimes get lost in the shuffle.

Parents who are going through a divorce can employ several strategies that may help make the transition smoother for their children. The biggest change children will notice and want answers to right away deals with the living arrangements when one parent decides to move out. It is important that the parents give the child advanced notice of when the move will happen and a tentative schedule as to when the parent will see the child to make them feel secure.

In addition, it is also important for the parents to maintain consistency, particularly for younger children. Consistency in routine, meal times and sleep times is essential to easing children into the new living arrangements.

Also, for older kids, it is important that their social lives can remain in place. Their friends will serve as an open forum where they can vent about the upcoming divorce, so parents should not force their children into a routine that dramatically alters their social lives.

Divorce can be a challenging time for all parties that are involved. However, if one is proactive in their approach, and does not neglect the needs of their children, the divorce process can be much less stressful for the entire family.

Source: The Huffington Post, "When a Parent Moves Out: 13 Tips to Ease the Pain," July 8, 2013.

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