Nearly all clients indicate in their initial appointment with me that nothing is more important to them than their children. This, however, is often not the reality. While it is easy to state that the children are the main concern and focus of a divorce process, most of the time, the children are often lost and forgotten.
Through all the emotions of the divorce process, parents forget that their children are also grieving. Just like their parents, children are embarrassed and confused about the divorce. Unlike their parents, children lack control. Children cannot make relevant decisions and are often left to deal with poor decisions made by a parent or parents who focus more on hurting their spouse than on the best interests of the children.
A parent must put aside their own feelings, if only during the decision making process, and consider the best interests of the children.
The local courts offer many resources to the divorcing parents to help ensure they make decisions are made with concern first for the children. S.M.I.L.E. (start making it livable for everyone) a program sponsored by Oakland County Circuit Court provides divorcing parents with the necessary tools to raise well adjusted children of divorce. While Wayne County has yet to adopt the same or similar program, the Friend of the Court's experienced employees aid in creating a parenting time schedules which considers, first and foremost, the needs of the children.
Regardless of the county in which a parent may reside, local therapists in the communities who can aid parties in the divorce process to effectively co-parent their children.