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How Do You Tell Children about Your Divorce?

By Sheryl Rentz on May 15, 2014

Children often feel stressed, sad, confused, and even angry during a divorce. The prospect of your parents separating can be upsetting at any age. Parents can make this transition period easier by remaining positive and by providing stability and support. Try to learn what your child needs and what you can do to help.

There are a number of ways in which you can help your children cope with your separation or divorce. First, make sure you are attentive to your children and listen to their concerns. It is also necessary to provide stability and structure so that your kids do not feel as if their life is spinning out of control. Let them know that you will continue to be there and that they should communicate their concerns with you directly.

What should you say to children about the divorce? Start with the truth. Your children deserve to know why you are getting a divorce. However, a long, rambling answer may only confuse them. Instead, pick a simple and honest answer. It is important for children to know that they are not to blame for the divorce and that sometimes people just do not get along as they once did. Avoid playing the blame game and try to avoid speaking ill of your spouse. Instead, speak positively of the future.

It may prove useful to discuss with your ex how you will discuss the separation. A united front regarding the talking points will help your child believe and understand what happened. You should also have a plan of when and how to discuss changes in the living arrangements. Let your children know who will make them breakfast, who will drive them to school, and where they will spend the night. The more information you provide, the less confused and anxious they will feel.

When talking about the divorce, do not forget to tell your children you love them. As simple as that sounds, it is absolutely vital to your child’s healing process. Make it clear that you love them and that you will continue to love them after the divorce. It’s okay to tell them that the divorce will be difficult but that it will work out. Make it clear that you will be there even if you aren’t always living together. For more information about your legal rights during divorce proceedings, please contact an experienced Pennsylvania divorce attorney.

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Posted in: Family Law

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