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Raising happy kids after divorce can be a team effort

Divorce can wreak havoc on all aspects of life, and for parents, protecting their children's happiness and stability from the tornado of changes is usually a priority. Parents in California can work as a team after their split to raise balanced, healthy children.

First, parents should offer children support. This can be listening openly and allowing the children to talk about their feelings, even when they might be referring to the other parent. They encourage their children to continue building their relationship with both parents. Parents can also agree to refrain from speaking negatively about their ex-spouse in front of the children, no matter the circumstances of the divorce. They let their children know that they love them and that it is okay for the children to love both parents without feeling guilty. Parents reassure their children that their divorce was not the children's fault and that they are still a family.

When parents truly have the best interests of the child as their goal, they work together from the beginning of the process. Parents can create parenting plans that take into consideration the emotional needs of the children. They remember that there are certain situations that might be stressful for their children, such as birthdays, when there are two household and possibly two parties involved. They agree to hold one party together for the sake of their child so the child can enjoy his or her day. Parents plan other family events together as well. They also work together to promote stability and routine, by agreeing on house rules to be followed in both homes.

Even in amicable divorces, however, sorting out child custody and issues relating to the children might be a delicate process. Parents may opt to seek the assistance of a family law lawyer who might not only advise them about legal options but represent them in court as well.

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