While divorce as a parent can be difficult, it can be harder to break the news of your divorce to your children. You may be asking yourself how to talk to your children about your divorce. You may even wonder how your children will react to the news.
While you can’t predict how your children will feel once they learn about your divorce, you may make the news easier to process by following a few steps. Here’s what you should know:
Set time aside to talk with everyone present
It may be important for all of your children to learn about the news at the same time. This could help limit any issues if one child told their sibling about your divorce before you could. Furthermore, you may want your co-parent to be present during this talk. Having everyone together could show your children that you all are still a family even if you won’t live under the same roof.
Consider your children’s ages before you speak
One difficulty when talking to children is gauging their ability to process information. A child under five years of age may not understand what divorce means compared to a teenager. When breaking the news, you may need to consider what you say and how much your children will understand what you’re saying.
Talk about what will change with the divorce
You could help your children process the news by describing what will happen after the divorce. For example, you may want to let them know they’re changing schools, or what their new living situation will be like. If you aren’t sure, you can talk about how you will let them know about changes as soon as you can, so that they aren’t feeling “left in the dark” about their own futures.
Experienced legal guidance can help you and your co-parent craft an effective parenting plan that keeps your focus firmly on the best interests of your children as you move through this troubled time.