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Don't Go to Divorce Court Without Reading This

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Divorce is almost never easy, especially when there are children involved, and it's often seriously rancorous. After seeing your kids every day, you suddenly face the prospect of becoming peripheral to their lives; this can be incredibly painful. The temptation is to fight for every shred of time, every bit of contact, even if it means taking your custody dispute to trial. But my advice is to resist this temptation if at all possible, because going to court is likely to create more damage than you anticipate--to you, to your children, to your relationships, even to your faith in humanity.

Some lessons from divorce court that can help parents and kids alike:

Alan Ravitz, MD, is a pediatric psychopharmacologist and senior director of forensic psychiatry at the Child Mind Institute. For Dr. Ravitz's take on everything from effective parenting to how divorce is portrayed in film, visit childmind.org.

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