25 Oct Divorce and Your Kids: Should you Stay Together or Split?
Couples in unhappy marriages debate whether it’s better to stay together for the sake of their kids or get a Divorce. Ask kids who grew up in volatile, dysfunctional families, and they’ll tell you endless stories about what it’s like living in a home where there’s constant tension, anger and abusive behavior. In my own home, my father was an alcoholic, and we all breathed a sigh of relief when he left. But when his truck pulled into the driveway, everything changed. We never knew what to expect. Would we get the silent treatment, moody and sullen or a violent rage that would spin out of control?
Even as a very young person, I knew my folks were a bad fit. I remember begging my mom to leave my dad, and she’d tell me that there were things I didn’t understand. She was talking about the economics and logistics of divorce, of course, which can seem overwhelming, but the stakes are high.
Our parents are also our teachers
We learn important life lessons from our parents—lessons about respect and how to treat other people. Staying together under chaotic circumstances teaches kids that this is normal behavior. And it’s a frightening lesson for kids to be learning. Is this the behavior they’ll be carrying with them into their own marriages?
Two homes free of constant arguing. It can happen
Divorce means juggling between two homes, and it takes some adjustment. The upside? The promise of a conflict-free environment. It may mean moving from the family home. It may mean a new neighborhood or even a new school. Most families figure out a new normal that works for them. Children are no longer riding the rocky road of their parents’ relationship on a daily basis. Things settle down and everyone is calmer and less combative. Kids have a chance to restore normal relationships with their parents, free of constant bickering.
Finding time to be a better parent
I spoke with a friend who finalized her divorce two months ago. She’s the custodial parent of two teenage sons, and her ex takes them most weekends. She fully expects that it will take a few more months for them to get comfortable with their new routines, but for now, she looks forward to having time to herself on the weekends. She has rejoined her old book club and is finds time for friends. Her life has more balance now. She’s also finding that her relationship with her boys has improved dramatically. They’re all calmer and more relaxed together without the previous tension.
Children learn lessons about the power of compromise
When kids see their parents co-parenting and working through issues in a Divorce, they learn that compromise is an important and effective learned skill. Working through the Divorce process shows your child how to get to a better outcome.
Seeking happiness is a valid goal!
The false value of keeping the family together to avoid the stigma of Divorce, while sacrificing the wellbeing of family members, is another life lesson for your kids. Seeking happiness is worth the effort!
Guideway, we’re a single point of contact
As Legal Document Assistants, we assist our clients in Divorce and Mediation. If you can agree on division of property and a parenting plan, we can save you a lot of money. Our fees are significantly lower than those of attorneys. Why work with Guideway? One flat fee. There are never annoying add-on charges for copying, phone calls and other miscellany. Where appropriate, we also notarize documents and file them with the County Recorders’ Office.
You’ll work with a dedicated specialist who is available for questions and support throughout the process. We’ve been in business since 2003 and have expanded to three Bay Area offices–Dublin, Oakland and Walnut Creek. More than 60% of our business comes from referrals and repeat business.
We’re also proud of our comprehensive Living Trust package that includes a Power of Attorney and Advanced Healthcare Directive. We provide a hard copy as well as a soft copy of your documents. More questions? Contact us today.
Guideway services the entire Bay Area
Berkeley, El Cerrito, Richmond, Pinole, Alameda, San Leandro, Castro Valley Newark, San Lorenzo, Concord, Alamo, Danville, Lafayette, Orinda, Moraga, Pleasant Hill, Martinez, Pittsburg, Antioch, Brentwood, Oakley, Discovery Bay, Pleasanton, San Ramon, Livermore, Tracy and Fremont. Our clients also live in the Napa Valley, Benicia, Vallejo, Martinez, Fairfield.