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Posted on in Divorce

children, divorce and children, Kane County Family LawyerThe decision to divorce is difficult under the best of circumstances. A couple with children, however, may be faced with an even more challenging situation. In addition to making the necessary arrangements for issues such as custody, visitation, and child support, parents also have an obligation to help their children through the process, while reducing unnecessary stress and confusion. This generally means that parents must be able to talk to their children about the life changes being effected by divorce to help them understand, as best they can based on their maturity level, what a post-divorce life will be like and how their lives may change.

Be Age Appropriate

When discussing divorce with your children, it important to realize that communication is an ongoing process, not just a one-time conversation. This is especially true in younger children who, as they grow and mature, will likely have more questions and seek to understand the situation on a deeper level. The discussion must begin, however, with your understanding of what your child is capable of comprehending. For example, a pre-school aged child would not grasp the concept of you feeling emotionally isolated from your spouse. Instead, simply explaining that Mom and Dad will both be happier may be a better start.

adoption, child, elementary school, daughter, son, parents, Adoption Lawyer, Illinois AdoptionAccording to, approximately 10 percent of all couples in the United States have difficulty conceiving. Research reports that women and men equally share the burden of infertility at 30 percent respectfully. The remaining 40 percent of fertility issues are unexplainable or a combination of multiple factors involving both partners.

Perhaps following acceptance of the medical diagnosis and having dealt with the gamut of emotions, you and your spouse have decided to begin the adoption process. Surprisingly, you have both decided to open your home and hearts to an older child who has been patiently waiting in the wings.

The process begins. You will need to retain an experienced family law attorney, contact the adoption agency of your choice and complete an application with the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). You will then need to schedule an appointment with an Illinois state social worker to confirm that your finances and home are in order. In Illinois, you are also required to schedule a fingerprinting session. Awaiting the final determination, you now have the opportunity to bond with your son or daughter.

Divorce and custody issues are always difficult for families to adjust to, but when one parent tries to alienate a child from the other parent, the effect on the child can be heartbreaking. The Parental Alienation Awareness Organization (PAAO) classifies parental alienation as a form or child abuse.

Parental alienation syndrome (PAS) has been recognized as a psychological condition in which the child has such severe opposition to contact with one parent and/or overt hatred toward such parent when there is little and often, no logical reason to explain the child's behavior. Some warning signs that a child is suffering from PAS include:

  • A sudden negative change in behavior or attitude toward a parent.
  • The child has too much knowledge of details of the parents’ divorce proceedings.
  • The child blames the parent for the other parent’s financial difficulties.
  • Children are openly rude and hostile to the parent.
  • The child has been told too many details of why the marriage failed.
  • The child feels guilty if they enjoy their visit time with the parent.
  • The child is encouraged to be angry at the parent, and told that there is valid reasons for the anger.
  • The child appears visibly uncomfortable around the parent. Not engaging in active conversation or making eye contact.

If you are involved in a custody dispute and you see any of these signs in your child, contact an experienced Kane County family law attorney to help protect your parental rights. The damage done to a child when they are victim of parental alienation syndrome can cause long term psychological damage.

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