Every year, 70,000 children are involved in a divorce, and this can have radical consequences. A great deal of attention has recently been paid to the position of children when their parents separate. If there is a disagreement or even a full-blown dispute, this can have serious ramifications for the children’s welfare. It’s therefore important to consider this aspect very carefully. This applies not only to the parents but also to the lawyer or mediator who is engaged. We regard the position of the children as being of paramount importance and do our best to convince parents that they should take decisions that will also be in the interests of their children. Our lawyers have taken specialist courses designed to help with this. Ideally, you should discuss the separation with the children. There are a number of useful books you might have a look at before discussing the matter with your children. Here are a few (Dutch) suggestions:
- Marsha Pinedo and Petra Vollinga, Aan alle gescheiden ouders;
- Petra Vollinga, Het Grote Co-Ouder Doe Boek;
- Cees van Leuven and Annelies Hendriks, Kind in Bemiddeling;
- Ed Spruijt, Scheidingskinderen.
Our office supports Stichting Villa Pinedo (www.villapinedo.nl). They can be helpful in offering specific information on the position of children in a divorce. In the Netherlands, Villa Pinedo is the platform where children of separated parents can share their experiences, as well as advise and support each other. Furthermore, experienced youth from Villa Pinedo create awareness among adults on what children are thinking and feeling. Villa Pinedo collaborates with youth to change parents’ behavior, in the interest of the child. Villa Pinedo has developed an online workshop “for all divorced parents”. This workshop runs for 6 weeks and each week you receive short films and tasks in which children of divorced parents share their experiences and provide advice. The tasks have been created by child therapists from “Lorentzhuis” Our office offers this workshop to all separated parents, free of charge.
It is also possible you need specific aid from a remedial educationalist or child psychologist. Our office collaborates with several experts regularly.