Divorce is a stressful experience for everyone involved, and it can be especially traumatic for children. Many parents dread having the conversation with their kids, but there are several steps you can take to help the discussion go smoothly. It is important to always keep the emotional well-being of your kids in mind throughout the process.
Here Are 5 Tips for Telling Your Kids About Your Divorce:
1. Prepare Beforehand
When getting ready to tell your kids you are getting a divorce, it is helpful to write down everything you plan to say. While it should not seem like you are giving a speech to your kids, it is important to write down bullet points to ensure you discuss all relevant points in a way that is positive, gentle, and organized. Furthermore, you can think of some questions your kids may ask, and write down answers to address these issues.
2. Choose an Appropriate Place & Time
It is important to plan the conversation for a convenient time, as well as a place that is comfortable for your children. Trying to sit down a half hour before school starts will not provide adequate time for your kids to process the information, and will only lead to a stressful experience. Furthermore, you should select a place that is private and comfortable, such as your kitchen table or a living room in your home. Having a peaceful environment and plenty of time will help the conversation stay controlled and relaxed.
3. Be Honest
When it comes to telling your kids you are getting a divorce, honesty is the best policy. Children are uniquely adept at detecting falsehood, and will only be hurt if you try to hide the reality of your divorce. While you should not go into all the harmful details of the case, you should be honest when explaining the reasons behind the divorce. You should be open to questions, and answer them as honestly and gently as possible.
4. Reassure Your Kids That They Are Not Responsible
Many times, children will blame themselves for their parents’ divorce. In order to prevent this emotional trauma, it is important to reassure your children that they are not responsible for your decision to divorce. Instead, remind them of how much you love them, and repeat this often. Reassuring them of your love, as well as reminding them that they are not to blame, is very important to help them process the divorce in a healthy way.
5. Avoid Blaming the Other Parent
If you and your spouse are getting an amicable divorce, you may both be able to sit down with your kids to discuss the divorce without hostility or animosity. However, if you and your spouse are at odds, it may be tempting to tell your kids what an awful person their mother or father is, and how much you hate him or her. It is important for kids to have a positive and healthy relationship with both parents. If you make the other parent out to be a criminal, this will only create emotional and relational pain. No matter what, it is important to talk as positively as you can about the other parent, and to avoid blaming him or her for the divorce.
Louis P. Winner Provides Compassionate Representation to Clients Seeking Divorce
If you are going through a divorce, Louis P. Winner can provide legal assistance. Attorney Winner has extensive experience as a Louisville divorce attorney, and has guided countless clients to beneficial outcomes. He understands that you are going through an emotionally difficult time, and he will answer your questions and guide you through the process.
Contact the firm today to schedule an initial consultation.