Separating from your partner can be one of the most stressful experiences you’ll ever experience, but what about when a child is involved? There are many complex issues to navigate in the world of divorce, separation and child custody. Protecting your child will be number one in your list of priorities but sometimes this might seem an impossible task to do alone. You might not know where to begin, or just feel you need a little outside help. Read below to find out some of the best places to seek support for child custody issues:
Child Custody Support For Separated Parents:
There are many forms of support available to you as a separating parent. It’s important to seek the help you need from these sources where possible, to ensure you’re fully supported and able to cope without letting the process have too big a negative impact on your life. Forms of support include:
- Your partner. If you’re lucky enough to be parting on amicable terms, you and your partner can work together to navigate through the trickier parts of separation and ensure your child is kept shielded from as much stress as possible.
- Family and friends. Your close circle of loved ones can provide an invaluable support network when going through a separation and applying for child custody. Friends and family can support with childcare, helping you get back on your feet, communication with your partner, sharing their own separation experiences, recommending support channels and more.
- News and articles. At Cath Karlin we’ve developed a hub of supporting information for separated parents, dealing with every aspect of the process – from comforting your children to seeking legal counsel. Our informative website can help answer a lot of the questions you may have – and if not, feel free to drop us a message for anything you’d like more information on.
- Dedicated charities. There are many charities based in Scotland that are dedicated to providing family support for parents and children in times of separation. Relationships Scotland is one such charity, which has a helpful info line to seek support on.
- Legal services. There are many avenues of support to be found from legal counsel. Family law specialists offer a range of services for separating parents and can help you explore many options before resorting to the courts. Mediation, arbitration, residence orders, contact orders, collaborative practice and lawyer negotiation are just some of the options available to you through the support of your legal professional.
Tips To Help Your Child During Separation:
The thought of where to begin during separation can be overwhelming, so we’ve made a handy helping checklist of things to think about in order to ensure your child feels as settled as possible during the process:
- Remember to make your child feel valued. When parents split up a child needs to be reminded that they’re loved and that the separation was nothing to do with them.
- Handle telling your children correctly. If possible do so with both of you present and try not to argue in front of them. Presenting a united front will help your children feel as settled as possible in the circumstances.
- Don’t speak badly of your partner in front of your children. It’s unfair for you and your partner to criticise each other in front of your child, or to drag them into the middle of the situation.
- Be truthful. If your child asks something that you don’t know the answer to, tell them it’s still something you and your partner are considering. Don’t lie to them – it’s something that will upset your child and make it harder for them to trust you or move on from the situation.
If You Can’t Agree On Child Custody Arrangements With Your Partner:
If being in the same room alone as your partner seems too difficult, or you’re struggling to come to an agreed custody arrangement with them, then mediation could be the answer.
The process of mediation uses a neutral professionally-trained mediator to facilitate settlement discussions between parties. It may involve just the separating couple and the mediator or can be up to a four-way process where there are two mediators, which is known as a “co-mediation.”
Mediation takes a much more softer approach to custody arrangements and your mediator can act as an additional source of support, helping you reach an amicable arrangement with your partner that gives minimum disruption to your child’s life and leaves you feeling in complete control of your life.
Seeking Child Custody Through The Courts:
If all other forms of negotiation fall through, you can seek child custody through the courts. This can be a stressful process, so it’s advised to utilise all of the support mechanisms available to you – from friends and family, to news articles and your trained legal counsellor. The Court will take many points into consideration but will always rule in favour of an outcome that has the child’s best interests at heart.
Experienced Family Law Specialist:
At Cath Karlin Family Law in Edinburgh, we’re trained specialists in family law, with a wealth of expertise in supporting parents through the separation process. We guide you through every step of the process, from initial communication with your partner and children, to applying for court orders and coping in the long-term. We pride ourselves on providing a highly personal service – helping you maintain control over your lifestyle and build a positive future for you and your children.
Our aim is to help you avoid the courts and navigate the process of separation from start to finish as hassle free as possible. We can also recommend other professionals to support you in tandem with our work, ensuring you have a complete network for all the help you need.