When parents divorce in Florida, the whole family is deeply affected. This is true even if the divorce is the best possible outcome, such as in cases where abuse or addiction are significant factors. While the adults are often trying to process legitimate grief, hurt and trauma, the reality is that the children are the most important priority at this time.

Divorce is always distressing for children. Not only are their parents living apart, but children are also expected to negotiate the complexities of living in two separate homes. For example, parents who have joint physical custody should be aware that it can be difficult for children to manage their belongings if they are constantly moving between two households. In addition, many children are well aware of their parents’ emotional states, and they are often affected by months, if not years, of household tension.

This is why it is crucial for parents to find ways to responsibly practice self-care while prioritizing the needs of their kids. For example, it is understandable for a parent to be experiencing sadness and anger during and after a divorce. What is not acceptable is for a parent to allow their children to bear the brunt of these emotions. Parents should seek support in the form of counseling or support groups so that they can better manage their feelings and be their best selves around their children.

Parents who are considering divorce may benefit from speaking with an experienced family law attorney. A lawyer may be able to review the situation and make recommendations regarding child custody and parenting plans. Obtaining quality legal advice and having one’s rights protected may, in some cases, reduce anxiety and help the newly divorced move forward with their lives.