A lot of time and research has gone into looking at how divorce really impacts children. Researchers warn against assuming it is always a negative event, for instance, noting that children who are trapped in high-conflict homes may actually see it as a positive. They did not have the life they wanted or needed when the parents were together and not getting along, so things improved after the divorce — even though that meant splitting time with Mom and Dad.
That said, studies have found that the most difficult divorces for children are the ones where the parents have a low-conflict marriage. While that low-conflict marriage is better for the kids while it lasts — naturally, not having conflict in the home is a positive — it is more unsettling for them when it ends because it’s harder for them to understand why it happened.
That does not mean you cannot get divorced if you have a low-conflict home. It could just be that you have insulated the kids from your own issues and the reasons for divorce. It just means that you need to consider how the divorce is going to impact them and how they’re going to react to it. It may be important to introduce them to the idea slowly, to reduce the shock. By doing this, you can really put their best interests first and you can focus on them every step of the way.
As you do this, you want to carefully consider your parental rights, your spouse’s rights, what your children need, and all of the legal options that you have to set up a post-divorce life that is comfortable for them.