Breaking up is hard to do, especially if you have kids together. When it comes to deciding who has the kids on what days, or if one should spend more time with them than the other – or even whether a certain parent deserves full custody – the experience is gut-wrenching, frustrating, emotional and exhausting. If you and your partner ended on amicable terms, it might make things ever so slightly easier, but this isn’t always necessarily the case. What first started as a civilised and mature breakup could easily descend into chaos and fury when it comes to your children and parental rights. If this is something you’re going through right now, here are some tips on how to get you through the ordeal of a custody battle.
Find a Good Solicitor
Having adequate legal representation will be essential in any legal proceedings you will face, but nothing is more important than your kids. If you want to make sure you’re getting treated fairly in the custody agreement, hire specialist child and family solicitors such as the Grant Stephens Family Law firm. They will be able to offer you the best legal advice regarding your custody case and provide excellent support for you throughout the process.
Reassure Your Kids
It’s easy to assume young children don’t understand what’s going on. While they might not understand the complexities of the situation, kids can always tell when something isn’t right. It’s also very common for children to start blaming themselves for the problems between their parents, and you must reassure them that this isn’t the case and that everything is going to be OK as your custody case continues. Try to avoid discussing the case or bad-mouthing your ex in front of them, as this is likely to make them feel worse.
This experience is going to take a toll on you and that is perfectly natural, but this is why it’s important to look after yourself. Make time to go and see your friends for some support and take your mind off of things. Treat yourself to a hot bath or a meal out, or plan a getaway with friends or your family when this is all over. If all of the above doesn’t work, consider seeking help from a professional counsellor or a support group.
Try to Be Civil
In some circumstances, being civil with your ex is simply not possible. However, if there is a chance you and your ex-partner can be polite and courteous with each other on the occasions that you have to be in the same room, it’s important to try, especially if you are around your kids in these circumstances, as it will be beneficial for them if you’re both being respectful towards each other. Furthermore, you will both come across a lot better in front of a judge and your legal representatives if you can maintain civility during your custody hearings.
The end of a relationship is difficult for anyone, even if you might be glad it’s over. There are always a lot of emotions running high and it can be challenging to navigate your way through the storm. If you are facing a custody battle with your ex, remember to be kind to yourself and use these tips to help get you through.