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Florham Park New Jersey Family Law Blog

What are some of the most common reasons for divorce?

Statistics show that around 50% of marriages end in divorce, but no couples enter a marriage believing that it will end that way. The fact is that relationships and people are constantly evolving and changing. So why you will be completely in love with the person you marry, they may change beyond recognition, even to the point that you feel that you do not know them anymore.

You should never feel guilty for considering the possibility of divorce. In fact, going through a divorce could be beneficial for both you, your spouse and the children you share. The following is an overview of some of the most common reasons for divorce.

Why it’s wise to have your own attorney in a mediated divorce

If you and your spouse can amicably settle your divorce on your own, mediation can be a good alternative to divorce litigation. It's less expensive and takes less time.

Mediation is often preferable for couples with children since they're going to need to work together for years to come as they co-parent. Being able to work out child custody and support agreements on their own can help them build a strong co-parenting foundation

How is divorce different when you have an adopted child?

Divorce for couples who adopted a child together can come with even more concerns and guilt than parents with only biological children face. Unless you adopted your child as an infant, you may be concerned that they've already experienced too much upheaval in their life. You're worried about how this new change to their family structure will impact them.

If your child's biological mother is part of your lives, you may be concerned that you're letting her down. You were likely a happy couple when you adopted your child and presented a promise of stability that she was unable to provide. Now that's changed.

Why consider mediation for your divorce?

Divorce is difficult, even if you and the other party resolve to work amicably through your disputes and reach a beneficial out-of-court resolution. You may want to avoid hashing out your issues in court or resorting to litigation, but it may seem impossible for you and your soon-to-be-ex-spouse to agree on anything. In this type of situation, there are specific types of dispute resolution methods that could work well for you.

One way for you to handle your divorce disputes is through mediation. This is an alternative to litigation, allowing you to address disagreements in a way that gives you a better chance of working through them peacefully and respectfully. By choosing to mediate, you can maintain more control over your post-divorce future and come to terms that will make sense long-term.

Why alternating weeks of custody can be harmful for some kids

If you and your spouse are going to be splitting custody of your children 50/50 after the divorce, you're probably looking at various schedules that allow you each to have the children an equal amount of time. Alternating weeks is one way to go, and it has its advantages. It cuts down on the number of exchanges you have to make, for example. If you are going to live close to one another and your children's schools, you may be considering it.

However, this type of schedule may not be a good idea if you have young children. Children and even preteens can experience separation anxiety or even develop a more serious anxiety disorder if they're away from one parent for a whole week. Even if you arrange for the parent without custody for the week to have dinner with the kids a couple of times, that may not be enough.

Some tips for telling your kids you're splitting up

If you and your spouse are moving toward separation or divorce, one of the things you're likely dreading the most is telling your children. This is a conversation that will probably impact how they feel about the situation and both of you and one they'll remember for the rest of their lives. Therefore, when and how you do it are both very important.

When should (and shouldn't) you tell the kids?

What provisions do you need in a long-distance parenting plan?

If you and your co-parent are going to be living some distance apart after your divorce, you'll need to include some provisions in your parenting plan regarding the specifics of long-distance co-parenting. Whether your child lives with you most of the time and visits the other parent only during vacations or the two of you are sharing custody, it's essential to include more than your parenting schedule in your plan.

Maybe you and your co-parent will be living a couple of hours away from each other or perhaps you'll be on separate coasts. Either way, having these details in place can make things go more smoothly for everyone and ease the stress on your child:

What factors determine the best interests of the child?

When New Jersey parents go through a divorce, their main priority is shielding their children from any unnecessary conflict and stress they may experience. Even though the end of a marriage is about the two adults in the relationship, the youngest members of the family can have a difficult time with this decision. In order to prevent unnecessary emotional and mental duress, parents will find it beneficial to focus on the best interests of their kids above all else.

If you are a parent, you may be wondering what factors determine the best interests of your child. Of course, you rightfully believe you know what is best for your child, but if you go to court, there are certain things the court will consider when making final decisions. Regardless of whether you go to court or negotiate the terms of your agreement with the other parent, it is important to strive for the child's long-term happiness and stability.

Can you keep a combative divorce from impacting your kids?

No one -- particularly couples with kids -- wants a messy, combative divorce, but sometimes it happens. Maybe your soon-to-be-ex isn't handling the break-up well and always seems to be picking fights. Maybe the two of you are nowhere close to agreeing on things like property division, support, child custody and other issues, and that impacts your interactions.

Meanwhile, the two of you have to maintain some contact because you're co-parenting. So how do you keep the tensions between you from impacting your children?

Is a co-parenting class worthwhile even without your ex?

Co-parenting classes are designed to help parents who are no longer a couple learn to communicate, cooperate and compromise with one another for the well-being of their children. Sometimes a judge will order parents to enroll in a co-parenting class. However, separated or divorced couples sometimes choose to take a co-parenting class to learn how to navigate this new phase of parenthood.

What if your co-parent refuses to participate in a co-parenting class? If a judge has ordered it, they'll need to comply with the order or risk sanctions. However, they can find ways to put off their participation. If there's no mandate from the court, you might have a more difficult time persuading your ex to do it.

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