How to Tell Your Kids About Divorce - 7 Tips You Need to Know
By Sue Hall
If you are married and have kids, but you and your soul mate no longer get along, it is important to remember what’s probably the most important thing for both of you: your children.
Leaving aside your differences, it is important to teach your children about what’s currently happening in your life, as this will affect their life as well. While most parents avoid talking about the divorce, we consider this information as very important to their well-being.
After all, it is better for them to know what’s going on rather than ask where one of the parents is and why they’re not home as often as they used to be.
Here are seven tips that you need to know when telling your kids about divorce!
1. The Discussion Should be Planned in Advance
First of all, make sure that you do not break the news to your kids when they are hungry, tired, or distracted by something else. It is important to choose a careful location, as well as the mood for when you are going to have the talk with them.
It’s also important that the two of you plan the discussion in advance and are present when telling the news to your children.
2. Give Yourselves and Your Children Time
Keep in mind that such talk will make the little ones realize that their family is going to change, forever, and that this can be very emotional for them. This is why it is important that you give them enough time to understand and ask questions.
Moreover, make sure that you and your partner are there to comfort them. You should stay by their side until they get over the initial shock and until they've understood the situation.
3. Stand United
Even though you two are getting a divorce, you should not let this influence the way you tell your children about it. After all, you will still be their parents, and this thing will never change.
Therefore, when talking with them about divorce, it is important that you two stand united and explain to them what’s going on without you arguing or blaming one another. Make sure that you tell the news to your kids together and in a mature manner.
4. Do Not Overshare
The only thing you should tell your children is the fact that you two are getting a divorce. Try not to tell them too much – for example, who is to blame for this, who cheated, and so on.
Also, you should not share hurtful information towards your partner. While you may hate him/her, you must remember that your kids should love both of you.
5. All of Your Children Should be Informed at the Same Time
Your children should hear the news from your mouth only. As you know, they do talk a lot, especially between themselves. Therefore, if you tell only one of them about your divorce, it is very likely that your other children will find out about it very soon.
Make sure to be the first one to tell them about the divorce – by doing so, you'll also have an environment where they can support each other at the moment they find out the big news.
6. Know Where the Children Will Live
Clearly, it is not recommended that you argue or discuss the matter of who goes where, so to say, in front of your children. When talking to them, it is very important that you already know where they will live.
As they will be worried about their family and their life, it is essential that you give them a bit of insight as to how the future will look like for them.
7. Don't Make them Decide
First of all, keep in mind that you are the parent and that you take the decisions. Therefore, you should never ask your children who their favorite parent is or, even worse, which parent they want to live with.
Of course, this also depends on their age. If they are teenagers, you might want to hear their opinions and thoughts on their future home. However, you still have the final say in the discussion – you two have to decide where they'll live.
As you can see, breaking the divorce news is not an easy thing to do. For you two, this might be just an event of your life, but for the little ones, this can be something truly heartbreaking.
Therefore, it is important that you know how to properly present them with the information. You can even rely on the advice offered by divorce attorneys when thinking about how to tell your children that you are getting a divorce.
After all, their health is the most important thing for you in moments like this one.
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