It doesn’t matter how old your children are; divorce can be a stressful and scary time for them.
It’s up to you to ensure you help them through this process, and part of that is telling them about the situation. Use these tips to help you talk to your children about divorce.
1. Be honest (but gentle)
You shouldn’t lie to your kids. They should know why their parents are filing for divorce (within reason). However, don’t make the explanation long and confusing.
Choose a simple way to explain why you are divorcing, such as, “We fight a lot and think we’d be happier as friends.” There is a good chance they already know this and will better understand the situation when you keep the explanation simple.
2. Tell them you both still love them
Just because you and their other parent are getting divorced doesn’t mean you both don’t still love your children. However, this is a confusing time, and you should reassure them of this. Tell them you love them and remind them of this regularly.
3. Let them know about the changes that are coming
Your kids will likely have questions about how their life will change. Acknowledge that there will be things that are different, but some things will remain the same. Be sure to give them a heads-up about any big changes, such as moving or changing schools.
There is no question talking about divorce with your children can be a difficult process. While this is true, using the tips above will help you make the most of your conversation. You should also learn more about your rights in a divorce to ensure you secure the custody arrangement that works best for you.