Divorce is a big life-changing event. It’ll likely change your entire world, but your child’s world will likely change a lot more. When it’s time to talk to your child about your divorce, you may not know what to do.
You’re not the only parent who doesn’t know how to bring up the topic of divorce with their child. After all, talking about divorce isn’t in many parenting manuals. That shouldn’t cause you to shy away from talking to your child. Here’s what you may consider:
Planning a talk with your child
Divorce likely isn’t an easy subject for you to talk about to others, so when you talk to your child, you may find yourself wordless. You may consider planning out what to discuss before talking to your child. This can make it easier to focus on what your child should and shouldn’t know about the divorce.
You may ask yourself the following questions:
- When will you talk to your child? You may cause emotional difficulties if you spring the divorce on your child before school. You may, instead, try talking after dinner or on the weekend.
- What will change after the divorce? Your child may need to change schools after the divorce. You may need to talk about when your child will see you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse.
- Why are you getting a divorce? Your child may be wondering why this is happening, maybe they’ll even blame themselves. You may try explaining the cause of the divorce without revealing too many details that your child wouldn’t understand or shouldn’t know.
- Will your child have questions? Depending on your child’s age, they’ll have tons of questions or none at all. You may consider letting them ask everything they have in mind, but be prepared to not have answers for everything.
You may not want to talk about divorce until you’re sure the process is over. When planning for divorce, you may need to consider all of your legal options.