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Make it concrete, not sugar

Before you make a presentation to co-workers or give a speech to a Clark County business group or Las Vegas neighborhood organization, experts urge you to take the time to know your audience. Who will you address? When you know who is listening, you can adapt your message to make it resonate with them.

Child therapist, author and mother Natasha Daniels says that same approach should be used by parents trying to figure out how to explain their divorce and child custody arrangement to a toddler. She says that young children “are very concrete, literal creatures” and that an effective explanation of divorce is given to them on their terms.

Daniels says too many parents think toddlers are too young to understand divorce. And in a sense, that’s correct: toddlers are too young to grasp all the nuances of emotional turbulence and financial details and whatnot. But they not too young to feel and see the changes in their lives and not too young to deserve a clear explanation of what’s happening.

Make the explanation in simple, concrete terms, Daniels urges. “You will be living here in this house and also living at Daddy’s house two days a week. You will sleep there and you will have dinner there and have clothes and toys there, too. You will sleep here and have dinner here and have clothes and toys here as well.” And so on. Keep it simple, keep it clear and concrete and don’t sugarcoat things.

Daniels says sugarcoating reality with phrases like “nothing will really change” will do your little one no good. “(It) won’t prepare your children for the reality of what is to come.”

The reality is that you and your Las Vegas family law attorney will sit down to discuss your priorities in your divorce; priorities such as child custody and visitation. Your Clark County lawyer works with you and the other party to reach workable solutions that protect your parental rights and the best interests of your children.


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