Staying together for the kids often makes sense — to a point

One of the main concerns people have when getting divorced is the impact it will have on their children — and rightfully so. Impressionable kids can be affected by a divorce for the rest of their lives. Thus, many parents choose to keep their families together by staying married, figuring that the emotional costs of a child custody decision might be too much to bear.

But is this the right decision? It depends, of course, on the couple and the family. Clearly, if there are situations that could be dangerous or harmful, such as abusive behavior on the part of one of the parents, then putting off a divorce makes little sense. In a similar way, even if there is no abuse, constant arguing or other conflict can make things worse rather than better — and create an undesirable emotional path for children to follow into adulthood.

Some parents have realized that they cannot, or should not, function as a couple any longer, but want to minimize any impact to their children. Some people have gone so far as to stay in their existing homes but divide them, so that kids stay under the same roof, but in a different form.

Clearly, the decision to end a marriage is not one that should be taken lightly; when children are involved, the decision is all the more impactful. Having a clear plan for what post-married life will look like can be an essential part of the process, both from a personal perspective as well as a financial one.

Source: The Coloradoan, “Squicquero: Should you avoid divorce for kids’ sake?” Sandi Squicquero, June 9, 2014