For children, learning about their parent’s divorce is one of the most earthshattering experiences they will ever face in their young lives. As parents, you and your spouse can help soften the blow and make it easier for your children to cope with the changes your divorce will bring. To ensure this delicate conversation goes smoothly, you should plan what you wish to say and coordinate with your spouse on a time that works best for everyone.
Breaking the News to Your Children
Although you probably have several unresolved issues with your spouse, it is crucial to approach this conversation as a team. Presenting a unified front for your children during this difficult time will help them feel secure during a time of uncertainty, so try to set your differences aside for their benefit.
The time you choose will also play a pivotal role in the delivery of this delicate news, so carefully consider your options. Generally, it is best to have this conversation before the weekend, so they have a couple of days to process it and enough time to think of any questions they may have.
Consider the following tips before telling your children about the divorce:
- Do not blame each other: Maybe your spouse is responsible for the divorce, but now is not the time to play the blame game. Assigning blame and pointing fingers is not what this conversation is about, so do not get stuck in the weeds. Your focus should be on your children and playing the blame game will only harm them.
- Hold back on the details: Honesty is a good policy, but you should avoid oversharing. Your children do not need to know about the legal issues involved in your split. Only share the details you think may reduce their anxiety. For example, if your spouse is moving out, let them know and tell them how often they may be able to visit, assuming you have those details.
- Tell them you love them: All parents love their children, but no matter how obvious this fact is to you, it might not be obvious to them when they hear about your divorce. Offer them reassurance and let them know you both love them and that nothing they did caused the divorce.
- Always be ready to talk: Your children might not be ready to talk to you immediately after this conversation, so you and your spouse must be ready and available to talk to them when they are. Long after the initial conversation is over, you can and must continue to help your children cope with this news.
You might also want to let your children’s teachers know about the divorce, so they can keep their eyes peeled for any odd behavior or cries for attention. Kids spend much of their time at school, so making the other adults in their lives aware of the situation is important.
Schedule a Consultation with One of Our Compassionate Family Law Attorneys
If you are getting a divorce, the team at Barach Law Group LLC understands how difficult this process is for you and your family, which is why we seek to ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible. With more than 20 years of experience on our side, you can trust in our team’s ability to represent you.