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Do Children Need Therapy During a Divorce?

Divorce can be extremely difficult to cope with as a mature adult. It can be all the more stressful for your children to deal with. But that does not always mean that they will need therapy. Sure, you may have a young child who is sometimes weepy, or your teenager may be channeling more anger towards you, but this is not automatically an unhealthy sign. Their feelings are normal, and if they are not trying to hide their real emotions from you, it means they are not afraid of unsettling you, that they do not think you are weak. Sending them to a therapist could send them the wrong message; they are not the source of the trouble, after all.

What emotional problems are normal during a divorce, and which will need some professional help? Of course, you and the other parent may strongly disagree on the issue, but a safe way to find out if therapy is right for your child is to go to a consultation. You do not want to delay help if your child needs it. A good therapist will tell you in that consultation if your child does not require therapy, and they may be even throw in some helpful tips to help you and your child work through this together.

Here are some signs though that you need to go ahead with that consultation:

  • Your child has emotional/behavioral issues for more than several weeks
  • These issues inhibit their daily life, or even your family's normal routine
  • People you value have voiced anxieties about your child
  • Your child asks to go to the therapist (rare, but it has happened)

Perhaps your child has trouble sleeping or eating, and you can find no medical reason for this. If your kid's grades drop, they have trouble focusing or even sitting still, if they develop phobias, or they have medically inexplicable fatigue, then these are other reasons to seek professional help. More serious problems could be behavioral problems such as fights, obsessive compulsive behavior, continual lying, and substance abuse.

These are just some possibilities. Divorce will be hard, but it does not automatically mean that it will cripple your children. In fact, it can make them more able to cope with life's difficulties. You and your ex can try to keep your children away from the arguments you have with one another, each of you focusing on maintaining a healthy relationship with your children.

Of course, to make co-parenting work, you need a sound parenting plan and wise child custody arrangement. Here you will need the assistance of a legal expert, one who has your family's best interests at heart. You can find the compassionate and experienced Long Island divorce lawyer you deserve at the Meyers Law Group, P.C. Contact our legal team today!