Divorce is rarely easy for adults, but it is extremely hard on children. That is why divorcing couples must take the right steps when talking to their children about the divorce.
Hurt feelings will occur no matter what, but how you handle the matter can have a huge impact on the healing process. Here are a few key points to keep in mind when planning the discussion.
Break the news together
Divorce does not mean the relationship between parents and children must change. Accordingly, try to break the news with your ex, so your children will rest assured that you both will remain in their lives. If there is anger and resentment between you, do your best to keep it under wraps during the conversation. The expression of anger is a normal reaction to divorce, but you should do everything you can to shield your children from it.
Do not blame your ex-spouse
When discussing the divorce, stick to the facts. Do not go into detail about why the split occurred, and refrain from blaming your former spouse for the role they played. Provide details about what will happen next in terms of lifestyle changes, but do not discuss issues like infidelity, as this will only make your children more confused and unhappy.
Expect a wide range of reactions
Children will experience a variety of emotions upon learning of their parents’ divorce. They may express confusion, anger, frustration, resentment, sadness, regret, and even guilt. Along with the split, they will also experience emotions about changing homes or schools. No matter how they express these emotions, provide love and reassurance.
Divorce is rarely easy, but by taking the right steps, you can alleviate some stress and sadness. Ensure your children remain top priority and make decisions that support their health and well-being.