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Family law: Helping kids through the stages of divorce

Divorce or separation doesn't affect children as a single event. Life changes that accompany parents' divorces have a waterfall effect on British Columbia kids' lives. Family law concerns itself with what is in the best interests of children, so giving parents the tools with which to help their children is one way parents can make sure their kids are moving forward positively in their new lives with different family dynamics.

The changes that accompany divorce can be handled by parents in a way that may actually benefit their children. When parents view their divorce or separation as moving forward in three stages -- before, during and after -- they can help their kids at each stage. It is in the third stage that most children will need help adjusting -- when they're most likely go between two different homes and not being with mom and dad at the same time. 

Children need time to process the loss that they may be feeling. Issues may be compounded if they should need to change schools. The more kids' lives can remain the same in the throes of divorce, the better. Many children don't do well with drastic changes all at once. Parents may be able to recognize when children are having trouble coping by behaviours that are not usually common for them like acting out, throwing tantrums or becoming silent if they're usually outgoing. 

A parent can turn to a British Columbia family law lawyer for guidance. A lawyer can explain how the Divorce Act applies to his or her situation and what tools are available to help him or her regarding any children involved. An experienced lawyer may be able to offer practical suggestions on how to help children through the divorce process with the least impact on them as possible.

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