Cindy Allen & Associates PLLC

Phone: 405-310-8673

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Working with children to adjust to divorce

Oklahoma parents who are ending their marriage may want to take steps such as sitting down together to talk to their children about the divorce and choosing the right time to file. These steps could ease the adjustment for their children. Children should have the opportunity to ask their parents questions, and their parents' focus should be on reassuring them. Parents should not argue in front of their children or share information about the divorce that children do not need to hear.

Getting the timing right might mean filing for divorce during the school year when parents can meet with their attorneys without upsetting children's schedules. However, they might instead opt for summer when children are around more and they can spend more time with them.

Parents might need to create temporary child custody and support orders. They may decide they can live together during the process or that they can take turns living in the family home with the children. They may also want to seek individual or family therapy. Above all, parents should work to cooperate with one another if possible. A collaborative approach to divorce instead of litigation may help to promote this sense of cooperation.

There are situations in which litigation might be necessary even if one or both parents are trying to do what is best for their children. Parents may simply be unable to reach an agreement about what is best, or the situation may be more complex. For example, if one parent is abusive, then litigation might be the only choice. The other parent might be allowed only supervised visitation or no visitation. At other times, parents may be able to negotiate an agreement on some issues but not on others. A judge will make a decision based on the best interests of the child.

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