Houston Family Law Blog

Adopting a special needs child comes with unique challenges

Many people who think about adoption think about bringing home a perfectly healthy baby from the hospital. This is what happens in a good number of adoptions, but there are other situations that might also occur. Some individuals decide that they are going to adopt a child who has special needs. This is a situation that each parent needs to think about carefully to ensure they are able to handle the specific needs of the child.

There are many things that might lead to a child being considered one who has special needs. In many cases, this factor is a health-related issue. The child might have physical disabilities, emotional problems, test positive for HIV or other conditions or they might have been exposed to drugs or alcohol. Some children who are considered special needs might have been abused or neglected or may have a diagnosis or condition that is likely going to cause problems in the future.

A prenup can help to strengthen your upcoming marriage

Prenuptial agreements are something that many engaged couples might not have thought about. Some people still associate these documents only with wealthy individuals. This isn't the case. Anyone can enjoy the benefits of a prenuptial agreement regardless of their financial status right now. We can help you determine how one might help your situation.

Some engaged individuals think that there is an "ick" factor associated with a premarital agreement. This is because they think of it as a negative thing since it is planning for the end of the marriage. Who wants to think about the possible end of a marriage before it starts? The answer is a person who wants financial protections during the marriage.

Protect yourself if you are leaving an abusive marriage

Leaving an abusive relationship is a big step, but it is often one that can save your life. When you are deciding what to do about this situation, you need to think about how you are going to stay safe. Many people successfully leave abusive marriages. However, there is always a chance that your leaving will anger your abuser.

Before you leave, make sure you have a plan for where you will go. This can be a family member's or friend's house, but you must ensure they are prepared to help keep you safe in case your ex shows up. You also have the option of staying at a shelter for victims of domestic violence. These centers often have resources that can be very valuable to you.

Plan a parenting time schedule that puts the kids first

The holidays present a unique challenge for parents who have recently gone through a divorce. Children might be unsure of what is going to happen and might act out because of this. We know that it is hard to think of your children struggling right now. Speaking to your children to find out what they need for the holidays and beyond might be beneficial.

When you speak to your children, you might need to think about the deeper meaning of what they are saying. Some children might not know how to express their feelings. Instead, they might only be able to speak about a situation. Try to figure out what's really going on.

Adoptive families can face challenges during the holidays

Adoptive parents face a host of challenges that are unique to their circumstances. One is the added stress the parents of adopted children can face during the holiday season. This is because the close family time might bring up a wave of emotions for the children.

Even children who have adjusted well to the adoption or who were adopted as babies might struggle with challenging emotions now. They know that their adoptive family loves them, but they might wonder about the birth family they don't know.

Divorcing around the holidays isn't easy

The holiday season is a fun, yet stressful one, for most people. One thing that can make this even more challenging is if you find out that you are going to go through a divorce now. Since there is a 60-day waiting period for divorces, you aren't going to be divorced by Christmas even if the petition is filed today. We know that you might not want this hanging over your head for the rest of the year.

There isn't much that you can do now since you can't bypass the waiting period. You need to take steps to build your own happiness for the season. It might help if you don't focus everything you do on the divorce. Try to think of things that you want to try and work on making some of those happen.

Divorcing an addict might be necessary

Being married to an addict is difficult. Making the decision to divorce one is just as hard. People might try to tell you that you can't just walk away from the person who has the problem. The truth is that you might have to walk away for your own health.

There are many behaviors that come with an addiction. Lying, adultery, stealing and behaving inappropriately are all possible. Sometimes, addiction comes with violent tendencies, which makes the situation even more dangerous. All of these can lead to the addict's spouse not being able to continue the relationship, especially when the person isn't willing to get help or doesn't acknowledge that there is a problem.

3 tips for making child custody work for everyone involved

Child custody cases are very difficult for some parents because they might have to do things that make them uncomfortable for the good of the children. This includes things like having to see your ex at special events for the children. While it is certainly possible for most adults to handle these types of occurrences, it sometimes has a big mental impact on you.

There are several ways that you might be able to help your children adjust to the new way of life better. You will have to evaluate the situation and determine what options you feel are best for the case. Here are a few things to remember as you walk this new adventure:

  • Encourage your children to have a relationship with your ex. There are very few exceptions to this, such as if the ex was abusive toward the children. Sometimes, kids think they need to choose between parents. Letting them know that this isn't the case can help them tremendously.
  • Talk directly to your ex. Trying to use the kids or anyone else as a messenger can lead to incorrect messages being passed. It is always best to go directly to the source to avoid any confusion. Additionally, the two parents speaking directly means nobody, including the children, has to feel uncomfortable as they play the role of messenger.
  • Set clear rules for what is appropriate at shared events. No badmouthing should be allowed and nobody should bring up contentious matters. These times must focus solely on the children.

Be prepared for the entire adoption process

Making the decision to adopt a child can be one of the most joyous that you may ever make. Once you are ready to do this, remember that it likely isn't going to be a quick process. You have to find a child to adopt, but you also have some other things to do. One of these is to go through the home study and background check. While this might seem complicated, it really isn't.

We know that you might have some questions about the process. We are here to help you get through the entire experience. We want you to feel well-prepared for each step so that you aren't feeling too much stress.

Find ways to reduce stress as a single parent

One thing that can impact your parenting style when you are a single parent is stress. When you are married or have a significant other, you can hand the children over to them when you get overwhelmed. This isn't possible when you are the child's sole parent. With that in mind, you can find ways to adjust your parenting style to encourage a reduction in stress.

It might benefit you to follow a routine in your home. This is usually a very good idea with younger children who thrive on consistency and stability. Knowing what to expect might help the kids to prepare themselves for what's to come. You might notice that they don't throw tantrums like they did before the schedule was put into place.

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