Susan Rossi Cook, Attorney and Mediator

Important considerations for divorcing parents who have kids

It is a sad reality that for some Massachusetts couples a divorce becomes an opportunity for a power grab. When the parties to a divorce experience conflict and resentment they can engage in actions that are solely intended to cause pain for their soon-to-be ex-spouse. Oftentimes, one of the most damaging things a divorcing party can do is to attempt to prevent their ex-partner from being with their children.

This, though, is often a detrimental path for many reasons. Not only does it prevent the parties from engaging in meaningful and productive divorce-related discussions, but it may also have a significantly negative impact on the children. It is often in the best interests of children for their parents to work together and exhibit reasonableness in their interactions with each other and their kids.

When working through a divorce and dealing with difficult matters related to child custody, parents should put their children's needs first. This can mean evaluating the age of their children and the particular needs that accompany their developmental stages. It can involve understanding the child's daily routine and determining if one parent is better suited to maintaining that schedule than the other. It should include a review of logistical information, such as how far the parents' homes are from the children's schools, activities and other needs, and if one parent is simply not close enough to manage the day-to-day needs of their kids.

It can be tempting for parents to simply make decisions about their kids based on malice toward their former partners. However, no one benefits from these short-sighted attempts at inflicting pain, especially the kids. When parents can work together and co-parent after divorce their children often find more fulfilling and satisfying lives.

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Susan Rossi Cook, Attorney and Mediator

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Franklin, MA 02038

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