• Children and Family
    TALKING TO YOUR KIDS ABOUT DIVORCE
    A life-changing event that should be handled with care
Kids and Divorce What should you do?
Handling the Divorce Process When Kids Are Involved

Divorce can have lasting negative psychological effects on children. However, some bounce back from it like it never happened. One of the biggest contributing factors is how both parents handled the divorce and how it was explained to each child. Here are some tips on how to discuss divorce with children to help them cope with the change.

Coordinating and Cooperating with Your Ex-Spouse

When getting a divorce, the last thing you may want to do is team up with your ex. However, for the sake of the children, it is a good idea to display a united front when discussing all the details about the upcoming divorce. Discuss how you plan to approach the topic and the types of explanation you will give on the day of the big talk, and as children continue to ask questions thereafter.

Choose the Right Time

Many parents wait until one parent is moving out to explain why. However, the best time to tell the children of an impending separation or divorce is soon after a firm decision is made. This gives the children time to adjust to the idea of the new family setup. This is often the case when parents involve a child custody lawyer to cement that arrangement and provide some stability for the kids.

Answer Children’s Questions

Divorce can often feel like a personal failure and having that wound poked at constantly by questions can be difficult. However, children follow a different healing process than adults and will need questions answered. How often will they see the other parent? Will they move far away? Do both parents still love them? Rather than sweep the questions under the rug, provide clear and honest answers.

Avoid Negativity

If you are not on good terms with your ex-spouse, you may feel tempted to speak badly about him or her to the children. However, it’s not a good idea to poison the children against a parent, even if what you say is true. If your partner’s indiscretions and flaws pose no threat to the children, let them enjoy an untainted view of that parent, even if that parent doesn’t provide you the same courtesy.