Telling your children about your impending divorce is likely one of the most difficult tasks you will ever face. How you break the news to them will impact their ability to cope with it now and for many years to come, so you and your spouse must prepare for it. We put together a list of tips that will help you approach this sensitive topic with them and provide the support they need to process it.
Gently Breaking the News to Your Children
If possible, you and your spouse should do your best to set your feelings aside and present a united front for your children when delivering this life-altering news. Just because you are preparing to dissolve your marriage does not mean you are no longer a co-parenting team. Hearing this news from one parent might create confusion for them and they might not feel like they are getting all the facts, which can increase their anxiety.
Telling your children about the divorce together might be challenging, but it is crucial to focus on their needs and concerns rather than on whose fault the divorce is. Playing the blame game will not do them any favors, so try to put those thoughts out of your mind.
Consider the following tips when talking to your children about the divorce:
- Your children do not need to know all of the details behind why you and your spouse are getting divorced. They are likely inappropriate, too complicated, or simply unnecessary, so spare them the specifics. Instead, let them know how the divorce might impact them, such as how often they might see both parents and if they can remain in the same school.
- Emphasize the fact that your divorce had nothing to do with anything they did or could have done. Your decision to get a divorce was an adult decision between you and your spouse. Moreover, let them know that your divorce will not change your love for them.
- Be ready for a variety of reactions. Children can be unpredictable and might not react the way you expect them to, so be prepared for anything. If they need space, give them some space, but let them know that you are available to talk when they are ready. Let them know that their reactions and feelings are normal and valid.
Make sure you have this conversation at an appropriate time. You do not want to break the news to them before bed or as you are dropping them off at school since neither of these options will give them the chance to process this information.
Contact Our Compassionate and Knowledgeable Divorce Attorney
Getting a divorce is emotionally challenging for families, which is why the team at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Graff is committed to helping each client we serve smoothly navigate this complex legal process. Backed by more than three decades of experience and a history of proven success, you can rely on us for compassionate guidance and skilled representation.
Get started on your case today and contact our law office at (805) 633-4999 to set up a free initial consultation with our trusted attorney.