Divorce affects more than just you or your ex-spouse; it affects your children, too. You may not even realize that you could be the one causing the problem. Your kids may feel like they're stuck in the middle of your divorce, which could end up causing anger issues, or could make your child resent you or your ex over the situation. See below for tips on how to prevent getting your kids caught up in the middle of your divorce.
Don't Use Your Kids As Your Messenger
Don't use your kids as a messenger for you. Giving your children a message to tell to your ex, and vice versa, is not a good idea. Your kids shouldn't have to tell your ex anything for you. Pick up the phone and do that yourself; send a letter or even an e-mail. It's your job to communicate to your ex, not your child's. If you can't communicate verbally yourself with your ex, e-mail or texting is sufficient. If that's still a problem, then you may need to use a mediator for help.
Don't Talk To Your Kids About Your Divorce
Your kids are your children; they aren't your best friend that you can confide in and complain about things to. Your kids should not hear these types of conversations; they're kids. This is a stress they do not need to hear or worry about. Let your kids be kids, and keep the drama of your divorce to yourself or to share with your actual best friend (or your therapist).
Don't Turn Your Kids Into Your Own Personal Spies
You should never ask your kids to spy for you, to look for anything, or to tell you secrets about your ex. It's OK to ask how their time with their other parent went, but asking too many questions or prying too much may make your child feel like they're being a spy. On the same token, you shouldn't ask your kids to keep any secrets from the other parent. You should never tell your child "don't tell your mom (or dad)"... this may make your child feel bad or even ashamed.
What You Should Do:
Your children should never feel the effects of your divorce. Keep communication between you and your ex, and always speak positively about the other parent. Talk to your family law attorney about other helpful tips to keep your children from feeling like they are in the middle.
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