I can help you bypass the truly awful adversarial process of the courts at the time of the breakup...
Most separating couples want to put the children first but just need some help to do so. Therefore, I asked Penny Coombes (Brighton based) and Stephanie Davies-Arai (Lewes based) (both leading child experts) a to develop and deliver a course of help.
The course covers 7 aspects that are crucial for parents to try to get right:
In my experience having a child-focused agreement helps the parties reach a sensible and workable financial agreement.
Group courses (there are three) can be attended either as a couple or as individuals. The first session focuses on managing your separation, dealing with such issues as how and when to tell the children. The second session focuses on how to help your children, and you, in managing feelings and issues that arise from contact and co-parenting issues. The third session looks at the longer terms, and how to cope wit issues such as a new partner, new baby, a move away and step families with other siblings.
In the alternative, you can have a course for you as an ex couple and can really focus on the issues relating to you and your family.
Stephanie has also written a brilliant book called 'Communicating with Kids' which I commend to all parents once the child is able to say, 'no'!
The Parent Connection have sessions and videos to help; I really recommend a look and engagement with the site. http://theparentconnection.org.uk/programmes/programmes/getting-it-right-for-children-when-parents-part.
Relate also offer very useful information for divorcing and separating couples at their website.
In any event you may want to read around the subject so I have prepared a reading list to help you.