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5 rules for telling your children about your divorce

Going through the divorce process will be tough on you. Just the same, you can expect your children to face difficulties along the way. It's your job to do whatever it takes to put their mind at ease during this challenging time.

Here are five rules to follow when telling your children about your divorce:

  • Have a plan: Know what you want to say and how you want to convey your message. This avoids a situation in which you're stuck and not sure of what to do next.
  • Be ready to answer questions: If your children are old enough to talk, they are likely to have questions about your divorce. You must be willing to answer every last one.
  • Don't lie to them: It's easy to tell your children what they want to hear, but this will only make things worse. Be open and honest from the start.
  • Do it at the right time: It's not a good idea to tell your children about your divorce right before they leave for school or a few minutes before they go to bed. You need enough time in your schedule to touch on everything.
  • Let them know you're always available to talk: This may be the most important step, as you want your children to come to you in the future should they have anything else on their mind.

Personal property can be a sticking point during your divorce

The moment you decide to divorce is the moment you should turn your attention to the property division process. While you know you won't get to keep every asset, you should fight for what's yours.

Personal property is often a sticking point during a divorce. By preparing for this in advance, you may be able to avoid some stress down the road.

Time to ask your spouse for a divorce? Do these things

If the time has come to ask your spouse for a divorce, there are sure to be many things running through your mind. Even though it's a scary situation, you need to proceed in order to get your life back on track.

Since this is such a sensitive conversation, there are several things you'll want to do to ease the tension. Here are five tips:

  • Prepare for everything: You need to know what to say, when to say it and how to respond to everything your spouse will throw at you.
  • Choose the right time and place: This is one of the most important conversations you'll ever have, so you need to choose a time and place that allows you to discuss everything in private.
  • Be safe: If you're concerned about your safety, it's okay to ask for a divorce in a public place or over the phone. It's not ideal, but your safety should always come first.
  • Don't talk about the details: For example, if you own a variety of valuable assets together, you may be tempted to talk about this when asking for a divorce. However, you don't want to cloud the water with these details right now.
  • Don't expect everything to go smoothly: Even if your spouse is okay with the idea of divorce, you're sure to run into challenges.

Planning for your child’s tuition in a divorce

Many things change during a divorce. Separating spouses expect to make a lot of tough adjustments. Long-term plans need modifications. Both men and women need to reassess retirement, consider disruption with savings and more. When children are in the mix, the money situation gets even more complex. You want the best for your family, so it is important to factor in a higher education for your children.

Study: Divorce rate down in the United States

Research suggests that the U.S. has seen a substantial drop in the divorce rate in recent years.

The study was from the University of Maryland. It reviewed survey data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Specifically, it looked at what women survey respondents reported regarding marital status to estimate divorce rates in the U.S. for the 2008 to 2016 period.

Why You Shouldn't Keep Your Divorce A Secret At Work

Even if you're one of those people who takes great pains to keep your personal life separate from your work life, if you're going through a divorce, you're going to need to at least share the information with your boss. Even if you're determined not to let the divorce interfere with your work, it's bound to impact it in some way, as any major life event would. If you plan to tell other colleagues, that's fine. However, tell your boss first.

Men face special challenges during a divorce

As much as New York and other states boast of tolerance and equality when it comes to marriage and divorce, you may be among the many men who worry that your rights will not receive the same consideration when you and your spouse go to court. Traditionally, women have a better chance at gaining custody of the children, leaving ex-husbands with child and spousal support payments that put them at a financial disadvantage.

Although the laws have changed and evolved over the years, it is not always true that the generations-old biases about the roles of men and women in marriages have changed. Because of this, it is important for you to ensure you make the most of every opportunity to protect your rights throughout the divorce process.

Ensure that you're not out of the loop with your child's school

As you work through the details of your custody agreement with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, it may be wise to include some language that ensures that you are kept informed about your child's school performance and activities. This is especially crucial for non-custodial parents who too often find themselves out of the loop in these areas.

While New York City schools have plenty of students whose parents live separately, they're not always adept at communicating information to both of them. In some cases, their databases only allow one mailing address per child.

Why long-distance parents should exchange letters with their kids

If you're a non-custodial parent living hundreds or thousands of miles from your kids, you've likely worked out numerous ways to keep in touch -- via texts, emails, video chatting, phone calls and social media. But it's likely that writing letters isn't among them.

Letter writing, many people lament, is becoming a lost art. In fact, depending on the school district in which the kids are enrolled, some New York students aren't even taught cursive anymore.

What fathers should know when seeking child custody

When parents divorce or unmarried parents with children decide to go their separate ways, it's always best when they can reach an agreement on custody and visitation, with the guidance of their attorneys. If a couple can't do that, a judge will have to decide the matter based on the best interests of the children.

Fathers who seek shared custody of their kids may fear that they'll be at a disadvantage in court. However, family court judges no longer work under the assumption that children need their mothers more than their fathers or that women are naturally better parents than men. In fact, that's considered discrimination. It's no more acceptable than discriminating against parents because of their race or sexual orientation.

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