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Divorce and Easing Your Child’s Fears

In Parenting, Separation & Divorce by Elizabeth Stephenson

No matter how old or mature your children, the prospect of their parents’ divorce is a terrifying and sad experience. Their source of security is splitting in two and big changes—both emotional and practical—are about to interrupt their life. In short, it is a life-changing trauma. As parents, we want to help our children process this trauma. That is why it is important to take a child-first approach to addressing your child’s fears: There is no perfect way to address your children’s fears. Try your best and be forgiving of yourself if some ideas don’t work out. Do not ignore the issue. Even if your child does not say anything and seems fine, do not take this as an indication that everything is ok. Raise the issue with them and …

What if My Child Refuses Visitation?

In Child Custody, Parenting by Elizabeth Stephenson

Most visitation schedules between separated and divorced parents are reached by agreement between the parents. This is consistent with public policy and the law that it is in the best interest of children when their parents can settle their differences without resorting to litigation. When an agreement cannot be reached, a judge is then tasked with determining the terms of custody and visitation in accordance with the best interest of the child. Sometimes, however, regardless of what parents agree to or what a court orders, children refuse to visit with a parent. So what happens in this scenario? Best Interest Considers a Child’s Preference The court is required to consider a child’s best interest, which is a broad, yet almost universally applied standard in custody and visitation decisions. The North …