When a couple decide or consider the possibility of ending their marriage the first thoughts, fears, apprehensions and concerns are for the children. The thing that is imperative to realize is that it is not the divorce nor ending that affects the children but rather the relationship they witness. Further it is the choices the parents make about life and the situation that further impacts the children. In a perfect world through counselling, hard work, communication and dedication the kids watch a transformation, healing and repair of the marriage but this is often not the case. Often the kids instead witness unhappiness, patterns that are destructive and hard to break and eventually they watch the very two people they love more than life itself breakdown, disappear, hide and struggle.
I searched high and low to solve the issues of my marriage but I eventually became too tired to push further. The damage done was complicated – hard to see and possible to forgive but unlikely to return to a loving space where we would thrive. I decided first………but the decision was mutual and we included the kids in the dialogue about it. I was aware I should be protecting the kids but the kids were involved every step of the way simply by living with us. Whether you fight on front of them or not they experience and live the tension AND so it always seemed natural to talk to them about it.
It got to a point where it became obvious that the kids would be better off without us trying to be the loving, couple, married unit…..because under the pressure to be something we were not we only created more tension. They eventually verbalized how much better it was with mama alone or papa alone. They saw us struggle to keep something together and saw how much more peace we all had when we “let it go”.
We have been living apart for two and a half months. The kids are curious about us dating, enjoy the time with each of us individually and the common denominator is they just want to see mom and dad happy. This is what I have learned – the children just want happy parents, thriving parents and hopefully we can be that in whatever shape or form is required. In our case SEPARATED, co-parents – not a traditional married couple.
AND so it be ~ your children are wise little human beings and if you can be OKAY they will be too.