Child custody is a difficult hurdle for all parents, but these 6 child custody mediation tips will bring you closer to full custody. Read the advice here.
Divorce is never easy, but it can be especially hard for children involved in a fight for their custody.
Today, according to the American Psychological Association, 90% of the U.S. population will marry. But 40 to 50% of those marriages will end in divorce.
Many U.S. court systems and family advocates strongly support the use of mediation in divorces that involve children. There’s substantial evidence mediation benefits families in conflict
When parents can communicate amicably beyond their divorce, it helps everyone feel more comfortable.
Want to know how effective mediation can help you win your case? Here are six child custody mediation tips to help you make the best of a difficult situation.
Child Custody Mediation Tips
With support, most children from broken marriages are able to adjust well to their new family dynamics after two years. But research also indicates children tend to have more problems after a divorce if their parents remain strongly conflicted.
Mediation programs can help nurture healthy family relationships after the divorce.
Here are six child custody mediation tips that help everyone win.
1) Check Your Emotions at the Door
Divorce creates all kinds of hard emotions. Even in the best circumstances, there are times when you must address unpleasant feelings. But mediation is not the time to discuss the problems you had during your marriage.
No matter what happened during your relationship with your soon-to-be-ex-spouse, you now should focus on productively moving forward together as parents.
Your children should not bear the burden of your divorce. When both parties commit to what’s best for the kids, there is no room to harbor resentment against each other.
The mediator does not want to hear your “dirty laundry.” And since they must remain unbiased, mudslinging will not earn you points. In fact, it could cause you to lose their favor.
The best thing you can do is to keep your emotions out of it when you negotiate custody terms. Emotion-fueled discussions will hinder any progress being made.
The mediator needs to know you won’t let your emotions impact your child’s relationship with your ex. Show that you can be mature and put the past behind you.
2) Listen to Your Children
Children need to have a voice in divorce negotiations. Although you may be tempted to focus on what you want, you must consider to what your child wants and needs.
Children benefit from close contact with both parents. However, when children are exposed to conflict, it substantially reduces those benefits.
During mediation, and going forward, remember who matters most and stick to what’s best for them.
3) Think Twice About Going Solo
Before you reject shared parenting, think twice. You may regret it if you make a decision like this out of spite.
The life of a single parent isn’t easy. Sometimes, it’s downright hard. You’ll get tired. You’ll need a break. And, believe it or not, there will be times you’ll wish you had a night off.
While in mediation, you may be inclined to seek sole custody. But when real life hits, you’ll likely wish you had compromised.
4) A Good Parent Isn’t Always a Good Spouse
It’s possible your ex-partner was a lousy spouse. But it’s also possible your lousy spouse can still be a great parent.
Don’t let your opinion of your ex-partner as a spouse determine your opinion about them as a parent.
5) Quality Over Quantity
Divorce experts have long said quality over quantity is what truly matters in the time you spend with your kids.
Now research shows spending less time with your kids may contribute to their overall success if that time away is spent providing support.
Studies show when you, the non-custodial parent, create resources to support your child and the custodial parent, it can be an even greater help than if you spent more time with your child.
By the same token, parents who spend quality time with their children, even if it isn’t through daily or weekly contact, can still have close and constructive relationships.
Even if you feel you got the short end of the stick, there’s more than one way to be there for your child.
6) Be Open to New Ways of Life
Divorced parents and their children stand to gain if they accept things the way they are and embrace their new life together.
Although you may harbor hard feelings toward your child’s other parent, you’ll be surprised how much it helps to put those feelings aside and make the best of the situation.
For example, perhaps shared holidays always caused conflicts between you and the other parent. But now you may find including them in the holiday rituals can ease those tensions and make your child feel more comfortable.
Be open to new ways of doing things, even if it isn’t what you initially had in mind. Flexibility can go a long way to help everyone cope with the difficulties of divorce.
Make Mediation Work for You
Want more child custody mediation tips to help you get through your divorce?
We can give you custody mediation tips to help you reach a solution everyone agrees on.
Contact us today to make an appointment with our mediation experts.