When two people fall in love, get married and have children, they generally hope they will remain a family forever. The last thing on their mind is divorce. However, this is not always the case.
One of the most challenging conversations you can ever have is talking to your children about your divorce. When you know divorce is apparent, it is important that you have this conversation with your kids before they learn about it from a third party.
Here are a few tips that can help you talk to your children about your divorce:
Come up with a joint plan
Divorce can be traumatizing to the children. Coming up with a joint plan on when and how you and your spouse will talk to your kids about the decision to dissolve the marriage can ease your children’s fears.
You may want to plan this conversation on a day that is convenient for family time, such as on a weekend. Do not do it during bedtime. If you cannot seem to agree with your spouse on how you will talk to the kids, you may want to engage the services of a mediator or a counselor to help you work out the modalities.
Don’t engage in “blame games”
When talking to your children about divorce, avoid the temptation to blame the other party for the divorce. For example, the kids don’t need to know that your spouse had an affair or just decided they didn’t love you anymore.
This might cause the children to develop hatred for the other parent, which is not healthy. At this moment, the truth is not as important as the support and the reassurance that your children need from both parents.
Divorce is never easy, but parents can often find ways to make the process more tolerable for everyone involved when they put their children first.