Among the many difficult aspects of your divorce, how to tell your kids is one of the hardest decisions you will make. Breaking the news about divorce requires a careful approach, one that informs your children but also soothes them.
While each situation is different, there are a few general rules to follow to ensure your child receives the news in a kind and respectful manner. Here are a few points to keep in mind.
Present the information as a team
Just because you are divorcing does not mean your children’s relationship with your ex-spouse should change. That is why it is best to present the news as a unified team, which shows that you will still both play important roles in the life of your children. It will also show that you are both committed to raising the children in a loving and caring environment, even though you will live separate lives.
Have a plan before getting started
You and your ex should also sit down and decide exactly what you will say to your kids before having the conversation. Do not blame each other for what occurred, but emphasize that the divorce will make you both happier. Break the news on a day when you will have plenty of time to spend with your kids, so you can answer their questions and mitigate their concerns.
Explain how your lives will change
Children do not need a detailed explanation as to why you and your spouse are divorcing, but they should know how it will impact their lives going forward. Moving to a new home, changing schools, and other new situations can challenge kids and make them feel uncertain. That is why they must know about these changes well before they occur, so they are fully prepared for them.
Your child will still experience emotional upheaval as a result of your divorce. Breaking the news in the correct manner and supporting them emotionally can make a huge difference in how well they cope with the situation.