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Why You Shouldn’t Make Your Kids Pick Sides in a Divorce

Forcing children to “take sides” in divorce can cause long-lasting psychological damage. As studies consistently show, rates of anxiety and depression are higher in children of divorce with high-conflict co-parents. On the flip side, the lower the conflict between co-parents, the better kids are able to thrive. Below we discuss why you shouldn’t encourage your children to pick sides in a divorce.

Increased Mental Health

Because it’s the conflict between parents and not divorce in and of itself that’s the cause for most emotional issues, children with mutually supportive co-parents experience less anxiety, less depression, and better academic performance before, during and after their parents’ divorce.

Develop Communication Skills

Your children are watching you to learn how to relate to others. Treating your ex with respect, compromising when appropriate, and resolving conflict in as peaceful a manner as possible will teach your kids how mature adults are supposed to interact – even when they disagree.

Healthy Relationships

When children are free to bond with both parents, they grow up to believe that relationships are safe harbors. Securely attached children tend to become securely attached adults who feel that they deserve a good relationship.

Be a Better Co-Parent

Respect your ex’s boundaries. Accept the fact that you have different households. Don’t meddle, pump the kids for details when they come back from visitation, or give them the impression that they can come to you if they don’t like their other parent’s rules, unless you have evidence that your co-parent is behaving in ways that legitimately threaten your children’s safety.

The best thing you can do for your child is to facilitate their relationship with their other parent. If you follow the steps above, you will teach your kids that people can overcome their differences and that families are there to support each other. You want them to grow up believing that their well-being is far more important than your feelings about your ex.

Our team is here for you during difficult times. Call our San Bernardino family law attorneys at (909) 315-4588 today if you need legal assistance with your child custody plan.