1: It’s a competition.
Almost always in divorce, parents either win together or lose together. Parents’ common interests remain common after separation.
2: We have a legal problem.
Nearly all issues in divorce are Mom-and-Dad issues. Parents and kids are badly hurt
when parent issues are miscast as legal ones.
3: We have a custody dispute.
Almost no couples have a custody dispute; instead, much like married couples, they have decisions and schedules to resolve, not labels to fight over.
4: The judge will solve the problem.
Judges’ decisions don’t solve a family’s problems; in fact, resorting to court almost always leaves parents, children, and families more fractured.
5: This is complicated
The emotional challenges are great, but the answer is parents’ simple focus on their
children’s needs. Building peace for kids is parents’ best light out of their own hurt.
6: To protect my children, I must fight.
The fight can’t protect the children because the fight is precisely what’s hurting the children. Success, therefore, isn’t winning a fight; it’s ending a fight.
7: Focusing on my children will hurt me
Far from hurting parents, focusing on the children’s need for family cooperation is the best predictor of a parent’s good outcome. Protecting kids protects parents.
8: I’m not sad, just mad.
Many parents hurt themselves by choosing a dangerously destructive battle to try to
avoid their deep hurt. Grief must be faced, not camouflaged with anger or conflict.
9: Divorce is inevitable.
Half of couples in divorce cases make a serious effort at reconciliation, some successfully, and child-focused courtesy will help whether or not there’s a divorce.