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How to de-stress your children's custody arrangements

Children are resilient creatures. Due to this simple fact, most children of loving and conscious parents emerge from the transition from two-parent household to a separated family without any significant psychological challenges. In fact, research indicates that kids of divorced parents are often just as adjusted and often more independent than children whose parents opted to remain together.

However, parental stress does wear on children. As a result, it is important to manage your child's child custody arrangements in such a way that they inspire as little stress in you and your child as possible. This can seem like a daunting task in the wake of a challenging divorce, but keeping a few tips in mind will help you navigate the situation with grace.

First, it is important to be on time when picking your children up from school or your co-parent's residence. Children count on their parents to be dependable and being late can put a dent in that trust. This advice also applies to your presence at any function you commit to attending. It can be truly heartbreaking for children to look out into an audience, at bleachers or at the opposite end of the dinner table and find you missing if you had committed to being present.

Second, make sure that you and your co-parent are both kept informed about your child's school performance, obligations and expectations. Nothing can make a child custody situation quite so tension-filled as crossed wires.

Finally, do not unnecessarily expose your children to any ill feelings you may have about their other parent. Unless your former spouse is abusive, it is usually quite important for children to have healthy relationships with both of their parents. If you treat your fellow co-parent with respect, that will affect your children positively.

Source: Huffington Post, "Parenting After Divorce: 10 Ways To Make Your Custody Arrangement Less Stressful For Your Kids" Jan. 25, 2013

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