Around the world, divorce is a painful procedure that upends the lives of many families. The practice has severe detrimental effects on a couple’s and their children’s emotional, social, and financial lives. In the event that victims conduct the divorce procedure improperly, they may experience distress and a decrease in income. Additionally, children may perform poorly in school, abuse drugs, commit crimes, or even see a decline in their health problems. However, divorce might be the most appropriate course of action when spouses have irreconcilable differences. Couples that fight or act aggressively toward one another may become disengaged. It is, however, possible to minimize the negative consequences of divorce if the couples manage the process efficiently. Co-parental phase is, therefore, the most crucial stage that should be considered in divorce process, while community phase being the least significant.
The co-parental is the fourth phase of divorce, and entails a comprehensive agreement between the couples, regarding child support strategies. During the period, parents can discuss legal responsibilities and develop practical plans concerning sole or joint custody, child support, and visitation possibilities. Hence, the parties would identify possible sources of income for child maintenance. It is, therefore, necessary for both the divorcing individuals to agree on the modalities of providing the required social and economic support for proper child maintenance. Parents should equally plan how children’s education, health, and other requirements would be provided. If the parties handle the phase excellently, then both the custodial and non-custodial parents would equitably share the child maintenance responsibilities, thus making divorce less traumatic (Benokraitis, 432). The co-parental phase, consequently, offers an opportunity through which all the interests of the children would be considered, thus protecting them from suffering after the divorce.
On the other hand, the community phase of divorce is the least important. The stage involves notifying close friends, extended family members like the grandparents and in-laws about the split. After informing the confidants, the separated individuals may then focus on new relationships or just stay alone. In their study on the minimization of adverse effects of divorce on children and parents, Stallman and Sanders (33) established that proper care should be provided to people during the divorce process. Unfortunately, the stage adds no significant value to the divorce decisions, because the third parties that divorcees may decide to engage might not substantially influence the divorce process. The phase also occurs after reconciliation and dispute resolution attempts have failed. Besides, numerous legal processes and decisions always take place before the community phase occurs; making it impossible for other people to help salvage the marriage even if they wanted (Benokraitis, 432). Focusing on the stage, therefore, may not assist the partners divorcing, either in handling emotional problems, or in accepting the situation, making it the least significant stage.
Co-parental phase provides the most critical opportunity for the divorcing parents to develop a practical parenting plan for efficient child maintenance. However, the community phase does not substantially support or facilitate smooth divorce process and, thus, may be considered to be the least essential. Co-operation by divorcing partners and the provision of decent cognitive and social development prospects to children through joint support is vital. Correspondingly, concentrating on co-parental phase enables parents to discuss how to prevent emotional anguish by instilling positive self-esteem on children, as well as among themselves. Overburdening custodial parents only serves to overstrain them and may result in inadequate child development due to the lack of resources and emotional support. Even though divorce incidences lead to discontinuation of families, they should not be allowed to terminate children’s lives.
Benokraitis, Nijole V. Marriages and Families: Changes, Choices, and Constraints. (8th ed.), Prentice Hall, 1996.
Stallman, Helen M., and Matthew R. Sanders. “A Randomized Controlled Trial of Family Transitions Triple P: A Group-Administered Parenting Program to Minimize the Adverse Effects of Parental Divorce on Children.” Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 2014, pp. 33-48.