If you and your children undergo a major life change, it can be stressful and challenging, in many ways. For instance, if a child becomes severely ill, daily life may revolve around medical care and emotional support as he or she battles to regain good health. Another life change that can have a tremendous effect on family life is divorce. When you make a decision to file for divorce in a Pennsylvania court, it activates a series of events.
It is understandable that you would want to minimize disruption and stress in your children’s lives as you negotiate a settlement in divorce. There are several key factors to keep in mind to help accomplish this goal.
Clear communication is necessary for a positive outcome in divorce
If your goal is to come away from your divorce (and to help your kids do the same) with a fair settlement and your emotional and mental health intact, it is critical that you and your ex are able to communicate in an amicable manner. If you don’t think that’s possible because of contention between the two of you, it is better to ask someone to help facilitate discussions, rather than try to resolve disagreements on your own.
To communicate in a clear fashion, you must first know exactly what you are hoping to achieve regarding child custody issues, child support, property division and all other relevant topics. It is difficult to communicate your needs if you aren’t even sure what they are. It is a good idea to take time, before proceedings or negotiations begin, to organize your thoughts and devise a list of specific needs and goals.
Your children will cope best if you and your ex cooperate
You don’t necessarily have to be on friendly terms with your ex in order to agree to cooperate in divorce proceedings. Those who achieve positive outcomes in divorce typically have this in common — they were able to cooperate with their exes to achieve a fair settlement and child custody agreement.
It is also helpful for children who witness their parents cooperating for their sake, rather than fighting over every minor issue and engaging in confrontation at every turn.
Create a strong network of support
Surrounding yourself with encouragement and support from people you trust is another key to achieving a positive outcome in a divorce. Loving family members, such as close friends, community members, teachers, counselors or faith ministers, etc., can provide various types of support that help kids and their parents adapt to a new lifestyle after a divorce.
Connecting with a legal advocate is another way to be proactive in obtaining a positive outcome in a divorce. Court proceedings can be emotionally traumatic and stressful, and laws are often complex, which makes having a personal advocate on hand a great comfort throughout negotiations or litigation.