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January is Divorce Month, How to Minimise the Pain for Children

December 22, 2020by admin0

Is it a new year’s resolution of a spouse who is determined to be happy? Perhaps a partner is waiting to get Christmas behind them before making the move. Is it the pressure of spending an extraordinary length of time together, which causes conflict during the holidays? May be it is simply a temptation to look for better options? What ever it is, that is happening between couples at the beginning of each year, January is the most common time for separation and divorce.

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Some people feel they need to have a huge fight, to justify their separation. This is unnecessary and leaves permanent damage which can hamper co-parenting efforts. If divorce is a decision you have made, it is really important to be gentle with your (former) partner.

Keep your kids in mind. Separation and divorce are not what damages children, it is parents’ ongoing conflict which really harms them.

Never denigrate your ex in front of your children. It hurts them emotionally and causes them loyalty conflicts.

Separated parents need to let go of the anger and hurt. Your children need both parents in their lives, so it is vital that your relationship changes from one of being partners, to being parents. If you leave the personal stuff out of it and concentrate on your children, your children will be the ones who benefit most.

If you cannot let go of the pain and anger towards the other parent, don’t talk to your kids about it, talk to a counsellor instead.

In Australia parents don’t have rights, children do.

By making children more important than your anger towards your ex, and protecting them from your bitter feelings, your kids should be okay.

A parenting plan is essential.

An effective Parenting Plan covers a myriad of topics and agreements from a school year calendar and holidays to what happens in a medical emergency, their diet, schooling, extra curricular activities, child support etc. Whilst some parents believe they can wing it, children like routine, to know where they are going to be and when. Children usually want to have a say in it, and that can be really important, but it is the parents who need to make the decisions together, in their children’s best interests.

When parents cannot communicate effectively and respectfully enough to formulate a comprehensive parenting plan, they need to get assistance from Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) Practitioners, such as interMEDIATE Dispute Management.

interMEDIATE Dispute Management has been assisting separating parents across Australia and internationally, since 1995 using a co-model of FDR. A co-model has 2 pratitioners working together as a team to help both parents equally, which is far more powerful, and fairer than a solo model (one FDRP) and allows robust agreements crafted during the session to be reviewed and printed at the end of the session. For more information phone 1300 367 330 or go to

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