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Should you follow the lead of these celebrities when you divorce?

You may not have planned on being one of hundreds of Washington parents who divorce in 2019; however, you and your spouse seem to be headed that way, and what you are most concerned about is how a divorce will affect your children. You have always known what's best for your kids, but this is new territory. It's understandable that you may feel a bit apprehensive.

It's helpful to confide in a trusted friend or family member, especially one who has gone through a similar experience. There's no shortage of divorce stories in Hollywood either. You might be surprised (and thankful) for the sage advice some of your favorite stars have to offer regarding post-divorce parenting. Most parents, celebrity or non-celebrity, agree that it's important to build a strong support system so you can tap into resources as needed to help your children adapt to a new lifestyle.

Stay positive, even when you feel angry

You might be processing a lot of emotions regarding your marriage, including lingering wounds from problems you and your spouse encountered in your relationship. As you move on in life and focus on what's best for your kids, you may want to try to have a positive attitude for your children's sake, even if you feel angry or upset on the inside. 

Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck ended a marriage that lasted more than a decade when accusations of infidelity surfaced between them. However, they say their three children are what's most important in their lives, and they work together on a daily basis to be fully available and supportive of their kids.

Family times don't have to end with divorce

You may no longer want to be married to your current spouse, but that does not necessarily mean you want your children to constantly have to choose between parents when they have birthdays, holidays or special events in their lives. You can customize your co-parenting plan to schedule which parent spends which days with the kids, thus lifting the burden of decision from their shoulders.

On the other hand, you may want to do what celebrities such as Bruce Willis and Demi Moore have done in their post-divorce, co-parenting lives. They have always spent special occasions together as a family, so their three daughters could continue to experience family gatherings even though their parents were no longer married. 

Successful co-parents keep lines of communication open

You and your spouse hopefully get along well enough that you are able to have amicable discussions regarding your children's well-being. Then again, even if you feel like you want to explode with anger whenever you and your ex are in the same room, your children are bound to fare best if you try to keep clear lines of communication open at all times with your co-parent.

NFL superstar Tom Brady was never married to the mother of his child; in fact, they had already severed their relationship when she learned she was pregnant. Since then, Brady has entered into a new relationship, but he and his ex email each other on a regular basis to share news and correspond about issues regarding their son. 

You are in control of the ultimate outcome, even when problems arise

It never hurts to try to maintain a civil relationship with your former spouse, since you'll always be connected because of your children. Some celebrities, such as Debra Messing and Daniel Zelman, have even continued living together after they broke up, just because they felt at the time that it was in their son's best interests to do so. If your ex refuses to co-operate or disobeys a court order and things get stressful, you can reach out for legal support to help rectify the situation.

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