Tips for Divorcing Parents: How to Break the News to Your Children

child at a law office

Divorce is a difficult ordeal to go through. When you file for a divorce, you will find yourself exhausting your energy as you go through a lot of things at the same time, from meeting with your Albuquerque divorce attorney to attending counseling sessions and hearings.

Moreover, it gets harder when there are kids involved. Divorce has a profound effect on children. Often, divorce caters to the needs of the parents, with the children’s feelings and thoughts taking the backseat. Although a divorce may be for the good of the children, too, the whole process can be a lot to take in for kids.

Parents have a responsibility to consider their children and do their best to help them cope. Although they may not show it, children experience a lot of stress when their parents go through a divorce. In one way or another, divorce affects children, with some experiencing more negative effects than others.

Children tend to show and exhibit shock, frustration, sadness, worry, and even anger. On the contrary, there are also children who seem to cope with divorce stress better than others. However, it will still help to work under the assumption that the divorce will affect them.

When going through a divorce, parents should keep the following in mind to minimize stress on the part of the children:

  • Keep heated arguments, apparent conflict, and legal talk unseen and unnoticeable to children.
  • As much as possible, minimize divorce-related disruptions to the children’s routines.
  • Avoid negative talk in the home. You have therapy sessions for that.
  • Both parents should stay involved in their children’s lives, if possible and advisable.
  • As parents going through the divorce, you also need some support for yourselves. However, it’s best not to seek it from your young children even if you think they can handle it.

family in the living room

Telling Children About Your Decision to Divorce

There’s no easy way to break the news of a divorce to children. However, there’s a better way to do it. It’s important that both parents are there for the conversation. The children may accept it more easily if they feel that it is a mutual decision between both of their parents. The couple should set aside any feelings of resentment while talking to the kids. So, before you sit down with the children, talk to each other first. Come to an understanding that the conversation your family is about to have is about the children, not yourselves.

During the conversation, parents should try their best to reiterate that the divorce is their decision as a couple and that the kids are in no way at fault. Many children tend to feel that they are the reason their parents became unhappy. They need to be reassured from time to time that they aren’t.

It will also help to give them as much information as possible. After all, their lives will also change after the divorce. Answer their questions, especially if it is something directly related to how the divorce will affect their life.

For younger children, it’s best to keep it simple. You can start by saying that their mom and dad need to start living in different homes, but their love for them (children) will not change. Just answer their questions as you go along.

Older kids, on the other hand, may already have an idea that the relationship between their parents is already in trouble. So, it’s best to keep it real. Remember to answer their questions carefully as older kids may have more critical things in mind.

No Matter What You Do, Always Be There for Your Children

True enough, going through a divorce is exhausting physically, mentally, and emotionally. However, parents need to save some of themselves for their children. Leave most of the legal matters to your divorce attorney and focus on other important things, such as your children’s welfare.

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