What I’ve Learned: Adults Behaving Badly in Front of The Kids

Divorce is an extremely stressful situation for all family members involved, including the kids.  Denver divorce mediation can lessen some of the stress by opening up the lines of communication in a safe and comfortable atmosphere. As Denver’s experts in mindful divorce, the attorneys at Willoughby legal firm will help ensure that your divorce is as cooperative and constructive as possible. Here are some things I’ve learned about the consequences of adults behaving badly in front of the kids:


“One thing you can almost guarantee is that kids are watching, listening, and learning from us all the time.  Even if we don’t think they are paying attention, they are! I have lost count the number of times something I have said or done in the past comes back to haunt me at the hands of my children.  We sometimes forget the power of our words and deeds as examples for our kids.


Stressful situations, like a separation or divorce, can lead adults to behave badly and not set the best example.  This should be an opportunity to show kids how to resolve conflicts appropriately, but it often degenerates into an all-out war.  Watching the two people they love and rely on the most openly hate each other can be devastating for children.


Realizing that your actions and behavior will have an impact on your kid’s development is so important.  While it may be difficult to remember when emotions are running high, you have to choose to be the parent your children need.  Putting them in the middle, bad-mouthing your spouse in front of them, or making them turn into the parent to care for you will not bode well for their future relationships.  Instead, let them be kids, choose to stop the conflict and negativity, and show them that disagreements can be resolved amicably. It may not be the easiest route, but in the end it will be in the best interests of your children.  When this is all said and done, you want to be able to look back and know you did the best you could for your kids.


I know some people are wondering, “how can I do that when my-husband/wife is uncooperative?”  As with most things in life, it comes down to choices. It takes two to have a fight – choose to stop.  Keeping the animosity and anger going only prevents you from moving on to your new life. If your kids can see you take a bad situation and make the best of it, you have taught them well” (Willoughby).

Willoughby, K. R. Esq., Genesee Living Magazine.

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