Helping children adjust to life after a divorce

Recently divorced parents in Missouri can take steps to make the transition into a two-home life easier on their kids. First, parents should make it easy for children to keep up with the schedule. For younger kids, a large calendar posted in a common area can help. Older children may want to keep track with their Google calendars or other apps.

Parents can facilitate a smoother transition by making sure the kids don’t have to pack every time they go back and forth between their homes. Having to repeatedly pack and unpack can be especially stressful for children who are still getting used to the two-home lifestyle. Children will feel more at home if they have the belongings they want and need in both places. Toiletries and duplicates of other items should be in both homes if possible.

How parents treat one another can have a major effect on the transition process. Exes should avoid arguing or engaging in any other type of conflict in front of the kids. Children can sense tension between parents. In addition, parents should try to stick to the terms of the agreement and avoid tardiness. If one of them is going to be late, this should be clearly communicated as soon as possible.

Parents often worry about the disruptive effects that moving between homes will have on children. However, most courts believe that it’s in the children’s best interests to maintain a relationship with both parents. Even if exes do not share physical custody, their visitation agreement may allow the noncustodial parent a significant amount of time with the kids. The parenting agreement should also outline where the children will spend holidays and vacations. To avoid conflict and disappointment, a divorcing parent may want to work with an attorney who could help craft a fair agreement.

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