Relationship Advice from a Divorce Attorney: Part Three

Part Three of my 3-part series on Relationship Advice from a Divorce Attorney deals with the topic of KIDS AND FAMILIES.

  • Talk about kids before having them. You wouldn’t believe how common it is for people to get married even though they may not be on the same page about having kids because one person thinks he or she can convince the other person to change his or her mind. This is simply one of those things that you’re either on the same page or you’re not. While you’re at it, it’s important to talk about other kid-related things such as – how will you divide the work? What do you expect your life to look like with a kid? Will one of you be a stay-at-home parent, and if so, for how long? How will you balance the day-to-day struggle of work and family? What religious upbringing do you expect to give your children? Do you want your kids to go to private or public school?

  • The in-laws. How will your extended families play a part in your marriage? How will you juggle holidays and special events? What are your expectations as to how often you will spend time with the in-laws? It is important to set boundaries and have clear expectations about this issue before walking down the aisle. Fights over extended family are a common cause of marital problems and frustration.

  • Don’t “stay in the relationship” for the kids. Almost everyone agrees that it’s better for the kids for their parents to separate and have a good co-parenting relationship rather than live in the same house and hate each other.

    Remember: marriage has many benefits, but it is not without its difficulties. Be prepared to work for your marriage because, if you aren’t, you might end up working even harder to get through a divorce.

Kate McDonough, Esquire