Family law cases can be extremely emotional and a turbulent time for the parties and their children. Reactions to divorce differ from one person to the next, but very often they include anger, frustration, anxiety, and mild depression. When you fully under the stress of divorce, managing your emotional and mental health and maintaining all appearances of stability may be the determining factor in your getting the parenting time you seek with your children.

Given how emotions so often run high with family law matters, you and your children’s safety is of foremost importance. With your focus on the legal matters at hand, you may be distracted, your financial resources may dwindle, your job or school performance may be interfered with, and your energy may be tapped. Knowing you are under stress, in your everyday parenting, be mindful of where your children are and what they are doing at all times. If your mental health is suffering, consider appropriate counseling or therapy.

Most of us strive to achieve a healthy lifestyle. These things — eating healthy, exercising regularly, getting eight hours of sleep every night, and finding spiritual time — help with stress management. But, sometimes it does take a little more to get through difficulties. Perhaps you feel like you’re barely getting through the days, your burden too heavy to carry. Perhaps you behave erratically, exercise poor judgment and reckless decision-making. Maybe you try washing your troubles away with excessive alcohol or drug use. Perhaps you become prone to bad temper, argument, and even fighting. Well, if any of those reflect your circumstance, then you are not managing your stress and you should seek help.

When your mental health is out of balance, with depression, frustration, anger, or anxiety, then consider appropriate counseling or therapy. Take notice and listen when friends and family, including your children, tell you that “you’re just not yourself these days.” If your relationships are falling to the wayside, then something is wrong.