There is more to a divorce than simply walking into the family court as a couple and walking out divorced. This is especially true if you have children together. If you have made the decision to dissolve your marriage, you are probably concerned about how this will impact your children.
Divorce affects children just as it does adults. It is not uncommon for them to feel confused, worried, sad and even guilty about their parents’ divorce. Here are a few steps you can take to help your children cope:
Break the news as a team
If possible, it is best that both parents are present when talking to the kids. This gives you a united front and keeps everyone on the same page.
During this meeting, be as honest as possible while keeping the kids’ ages in mind. Keep in mind that older children may have more specific questions than younger ones, and be prepared with answers that don’t lay the blame at either party’s feet.
Reassure the child of your unconditional love
Divorce can bring lots of uncertainty. With the parents going their separate ways, it is not uncommon for most children to wonder what life will be like going forward.
This is the time to reassure the child of your unwavering love and commitment. On the matter of custody, let the children know that they will have plenty of time to spend with both parents.
Encourage your child to frankly express their feelings
Children process difficult news differently than adults. Your children will probably have a lot to talk about regarding your divorce. As they do, listen attentively without interrupting and realize that strong emotions are normal.
A good parenting plan can help your children cope with the emotional challenges that are ahead, so get experienced legal guidance moving forward.