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Parenting through Divorce

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January is a time for new starts and often it is when our family team take new instructions after that last family Christmas together, but it’s your children that should come first in the whole process, whether you’re just starting proceedings or have child arrangements in order.

How to put children First when you get Divorced

Two thirds of separated parents surveyed for Good Divorce Week said they lacked help or advice about how to put their children first when they split from their partner.

New research by family justice organisation Resolution shows the struggles of separated parents, particularly during the pandemic. Resolution commissioned an exclusive poll of separated parents, carried out by YouGov.

  • One third of separated or divorced parents said they found it harder to keep child contact arrangements in place since pandemic restrictions such as lockdowns began.
  • Nearly three in 10 said that they have felt more stress/tension in their relationship with their ex-partner since the pandemic started.

The latest official figures show nearly 90,000 children were involved in private law applications – legal processes to determine matters like who the child lives within England and Wales in the last 12 months. That’s the highest figure ever recorded and an increase of over 6% on the previous year.

With nearly a quarter of a million people getting divorced each year, the need for information and support is clear, yet separated parents reported a distinct absence of guidance in this area.

A guide to parenting through separation

A new guide from Resolution, Parenting Through Separation, aims to fill that gap. It offers information on separation and divorce, advice and practical tips on ensuring family break-up has as little impact on children as possible.

The new poll underlines the need for resources like this. Parents reported a range of behavioural impacts that separation had on their children.

  • One in 10 said their children showed violent outbursts and one in seven said their children displayed anti-social behaviour since breaking up with their ex-partner.
  • A quarter of parents said their children showed a loss of confidence and a similar proportion said their children had suffered from depression due to family breakdown.
  • Nearly two fifths of parents surveyed said they turned to friends and family for advice during their separation.
  • A third of parents engaged a solicitor or legal professional and the vast majority of them reported that doing so was an effective method in helping to get them the advice they needed.

Family Solicitor Lucinda McWatt, who has a wealth of experience helping families says divorce is a difficult time for parents, but can obviously hit children even harder:

“Family break up is often a fraught and difficult time for parents, and it can be even harder for children and now sadly as always in January those parents who have postponed their split for the sake of that one last Christmas together start to think about divorce proceeding.”

“As a firm we got involved in Good Divorce Week at the end of last year enabling clients to access a Parenting Through Separation guide and would advise anyone considering separation this new year to read it through and then come and have a friendly no obligation chat with me or one of the team and we can work together to put the best interests of your children first.”

How can we help 

For friendly help and advice call our divorce & family law solicitors on 0161 785 3500 or email

Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.

This blog was posted some time ago and its contents may now be out of date. For the latest legal position relating to these issues, get in touch with the author - or make an enquiry now.

Written by Lucinda McWatt


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