Divorce is one of the biggest disruptors in life. Even when ending a marriage ultimately improves the lives of everyone involved, it’s still devastating for spouses and especially their children. Divorce is not the end of a relationship between parents, but rather the beginning of a new chapter.
Much or most of the time leading up to the finalization of your divorce has likely focused on differences with your spouse. But even before the process ends, your children’s needs should become the priority. How you respond depends on their age and ability to comprehend this new reality.
Co-parenting vows can help your kids thrive
Whether you and your soon-to-be ex still get along or can’t stand to be in the same room, it’s crucial to understand that your children come first. You can help your kids through these challenging times by making these promises to each other:
- Be responsible: We will honor all obligations and terms of our custody agreement.
- Be reliable: We can count on each other to live up to our promises regarding our kids.
- Be respectful: We will never speak badly about each other in front of our children. When disagreements arise, we’ll talk directly to each other in a civil manner.
- Be supportive: We will have each other’s back when it comes to discipline and not let our kids try to play one against the other.
- Be available: We will respond promptly during emergencies and always be there to help the children cope in times of crisis.
When children see their parents working together for their benefit, it helps them understand they are still loved and cherished. That feeling of security can help them adapt to their new situation and flourish. It can also define a new and improved relationship for former spouses.