How to Tell Your Children You’re Getting a Divorce
Going through a divorce is almost always difficult, but when children are involved, nearly everything becomes more complicated. No matter what age your children are, they will be impacted by your decision for years to come. That’s why it’s important for both parents to communicate and come up with a plan that is best for the children.
One of the toughest parts of the process is actually explaining to your children the hows and whys. And while there is no “one right answer” about how to communicate your divorce to them, here are some pointers that can help ease you through.
Communication Is Key
The first decision you will have to make is whether or not to tell the kids about the divorce together with your spouse. Ideally, you would calmly explain to your kids what is happening as a unit. This will help set the tone for life after the divorce and let your kids know that even if you are living in separate homes, you will still be parenting together.
Of course, in some cases, especially if physical or mental abuse is involved, it won’t be possible or advisable to tell your children together. You have to decide which option is best depending on your individual situation.
When you are informing your children about the divorce, it is very important that you both make it clear that they are not to blame. It’s also best that you tell them at a time and in a manner that allows you to keep your emotions in check. They will almost certainly be upset by the news and you’ll want to be as calm as possible. Assure them that you and your spouse both love them very much and that despite the changes in circumstances, you will always be there for them.
Co-Parenting Begins Now
It’s best that you and your spouse present a united front with all important decisions. Avoid blaming each other or talking about your spouse behind his/her back. Whatever your personal feelings about your spouse, it is important for your children to have positive relationships with both parents and you should do your best to make that work.
After the initial discussion, if you have more than one child, you should also have a one-on-one follow-up with each child and give him or her a chance to express any concerns or ask questions, and to provide personal reassurance.
The process of going through a divorce can be a traumatic. At The Law Office of Thomas M. Huguenor, we understand the need for an experienced advocate who will look out for the best interests of your family. If you have questions about child custody, we have answers. Contact us today at (858) 458-9500 to schedule a free consultation.