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What to do when post-divorce issues are upsetting your kids

No two Kentucky families will adapt to life after divorce in exactly the same way. You know your children best, however, and can determine a best course of action to meet their needs as they come to terms with your situation and learn to move on with life. If you ex is being less than cooperative, things can get quite messy.

For instance, what if you have an existing court order for scheduled visitation plans and your co-parent doesn't show up? You may find yourself with crying children, not to mention feelings of anger and frustration of your own. There are several things you can to do rectify such problems. A key factor is knowing where to turn for support.

Let them know it is not their fault

You might assume that your children know you love them and that your divorce was an adult decision based on adult problems. However, many kids internalize such situations and believe they are somehow to blame for their parents' unhappiness in marriage. Especially if your ex is not showing up for visits, it is critical that you tell your children it is not their fault.

Don't minimize the situation

While it's never a good idea to verbally bash your ex in front of your kids, you also do not have to make excuses for your co-parent, who is disobeying a court order and causing your children stress. It is okay for you to admit to your kids that what their other parent is doing is wrong. It's also wise to remind them that you are doing everything you can to resolve the problem.

Have an alternate plan to compensate

If your kids are looking forward to time with their other parent and he or she is a no-show, they may be left feeling sad and unloved. However, if you anticipate such moments and prepare by planning an alternate activity, you may help buffer their disappointment. A walk in the park or trip to the movies or their favorite pizza shop may not fully make up for time not spent with their other parent but can help cheer them up for the time being.

Beyond emotions

It's understandable that you want to make your kids feel better when your ex abandons them on visit days. It is also understandable that you would seek recourse through the family justice system because the court does not look favorably on those who refuse to adhere to its orders.

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