Even with as many divorces as there are in this country, roughly 40 to 50% of all marriages, there’s a lot of potential for misconception. Part of this may be due to our nature as human beings to zero in on the extreme in terms of situations. The result is the belief that a divorce is a prolonged and miserable process every single time. Yes, it can be hard to work through, but a family can still be happy and thriving after the process is resolved. So, when you’re filing a divorce complaint in North Carolina, or dealing with another stage of the divorce process, understand that there are ways for you, your former partner, and your children to still live happy and fulfilling lives in this new situation.
Divorce and Children
The first thing that we should discuss is divorce and children, as the bulk of the concern many parents go through is how their children will adapt to suddenly not having both parents around. However, there is potential for the child to have some benefits from divorced parents. This may sound strange at first, but consider this. Say that you and your former partner had a tendency to get into heated arguments, even in front of the children. This type of behavior can lead to long-lasting effects, even into adulthood.
However, there is such a thing as good-hearted people who aren’t a match for each other. It may make more sense to help your children spend positive time with each parent rather than stressful times together. Remember, roughly 80% of children end up adapting well after a divorce, with minimal effects on their grades, social life or mental health. The study that came up with this number showed three main findings:
- Children are at their happiest and most successful when they have good relationships with both parents or caregivers, who get along with each other. Getting along is more important than living in the same house.
- Children also benefit from being around emotionally stable individuals. In the case of divorce, this means having parents who are able to do basic tasks like providing discipline, love, and emotional responsiveness. However, this isn’t contingent on them living together either.
- So long as there are adequate basic resources, children will be just fine. Don’t feel that you and your partner need to make a struggling marriage work to keep your children in an expensive lifestyle with all the latest amenities.
As you can see, the most important thing that you can do in terms of keeping your family happy after a divorce is to create stability. The best way to do this is through open communication with your former partner. Try to talk about different potential needs your children may have before they rise up, from major financial items to the simple things like who’s going to take them to their various hobbies and activities.
In some case, there may be a minor clash post-divorce, when one parent may not agree on something that the other parent wants to do or allow the child to do. The best thing to do here is to try and be empathetic for your former partner’s reasoning, and also pick your battles. Don’t expect parenting styles to be exactly the same, after all.
The best thing you can do in terms of keeping a happy family lifestyle after a divorce is to try and keep healthy mindsets on as many different things as you can. For example, many people tend to get caught up in the idea of winning a divorce, but this manifests in different ways. During the process, it may be trying to negotiate or get different items or assets to try and spite one’s spouse. Afterward, it may be trying to rear the children a certain way or trying to do something to spite the former partner rather than for your own benefit. This serves no one, and can easily spiral into destructive behavior.
Another mindset trap that some people fall into when it comes to divorce is the idea that they have to take on every issue themselves. This is noble, but is more likely to leave you burned out than successful. In some cases, a divorce may leave a person not only having to manage their own emotional well-being, but potentially their finances and childcare alone or at least with a lot less help. Don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family for support, or even look into various professional resources to help you adapt. Taking that added pressure off is better for everyone.