3 to 5 years (Preschoolers)
Children from three to five years are preschoolers who are exploring their environment. This cognitive development means an increase in their vocabulary, and their level of thinking becomes more complex. They believe that they are in total control of their environment, which can pose a problem for parents who want a divorce. The child may feel as though they are responsible for the divorce and if this is the case, they feel powerless about the outcome.

How To Handle It

Preschoolers do not understand the dimensions and ramifications of divorce, and they do not want to see their parents separate. No matter how extreme the tension is in the home, the child often feels responsible for the separation. At this age, parents must handle the divorce in an open and frank manner. If the child sees that the parent adjust to the divorce, then the children will most likely adjust to it positively. It’s important that the parent reassure with physical and verbal affection. Children may feel very lonely and need someone to talk to.

A child of this age is old enough to have uncertain feelings about the future and a sense of generalized responsibility. He or she may keep anger trapped inside and be subject to bad dreams and unpleasant thoughts or ideas. A child may worry about his safety.

Parents should set up a specific time each day to be with the children for activities like reading together. A parent can do good by encouraging the child to talk openly. Even if the child balks, the parent should ensure visitation with estranged spouse and encourage visitation if it is needed.


Possible Reactions:
  • Uncertain feelings about the future
  • Feeling a sense of responsibility
  • Keeping anger trapped inside
  • Nightmares may start
  • Unpleasant thoughts or ideas

Remedy Ideas for Parents:
  • Read books to your child
  • Set-up specific time for them each day
  • Encourage your child to talk
  • Ensure his or her safety
  • Ensure visitation with estranged spouse
  • Encourage visitation if it is needed



Useful Online Tools
  • Custody JunctionTM - Easily schedule, track and monitor current and future custody, visitation, and support arrangements.
  • Online Parenting Plans - Our Online Parenting Plan Softare will allow you to create and execute your very own parenting plan.
  • Mandatory Parenting Class - This service if for you, whether you are court mandated or if you simply want the best, up to date information about how to keep your kids healthy and safe throughout the divorce process.

Suggested Reading
How to Win Child Custody How to Win Child Custody
This is not your basic child custody book like most you will find in a bookstore. This book is for people who are in the middle of a custody dispute or feel as though there is a possibility of one in the future. This is a resource for those parents who are fighting for their rights and/or custody of their children.

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THE DON’Ts – Good parenting through divorce has a dimension that is negatively defined. Good divorced parents do not speak badly or make accusations about the other parent in front of a child. They do not force a child to choose sides, or use a child as a messenger or go-between, or pump a child for information about the other parent, or argue or discuss child support issues in front of a child. In short, they do not use a child as a pawn to hurt the other parent.
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Featured Download Parent's Ability and Willingness to Cooperate: The Friendly Parent Doctrine, As a Most Important Factor in Recent Child Custody Cases

Parent's Ability and Willingness to Cooperate: The Friendly Parent Doctrine, As a Most Important Factor in Recent Child Custody Cases

Parent's Ability and Willingness to Cooperate: The Friendly Parent Doctrine, As a Most Important Factor in Recent Child Custody Cases

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