Getting divorced is painful not only for the two people in the relationship, but the children involved as well. If you’re considering divorce or have already initiated divorce proceedings, take time to consider how you will talk to your children about what is ahead for the family. Read on below for tips on how the best talk to your children about this sensitive subject.
Don’t bash the other parent
It’s easy to give into the temptation of wanting to say negative things about the other parent, especially if emotions are high. However, it’s important not to do this because doing so can make children or teens uncomfortable, resentful, and make them feel as though they have to choose sides between their parents.
Instead, use an age-appropriate description of what is going on. A very broad and general statement like “Sometimes parents separate so that they can be happier people” may suffice. Depending on the cause of the divorce, you may be able to provide some detail to your children. However, if the cause is infidelity or something else that may force your children to see the other parent in a negative light, refrain from sharing these details.
Work with the other parent
Even if emotions are high, talk to the other parent about how the two of you will approach the issue. If the two of you can come together and agree on what exactly will be said or what details you will disclose, you can avoid other problems later. If possible, talking to your children together about the divorce can make the process seem less traumatic and can show the children that they will still be equally loved and supported by both parents.
Explain how divorce will affect their daily lives
One of the first questions on your child’s mind will probably be how will the divorce affect them. Speak with your spouse beforehand and discuss how you will address this subject. If the children’s lives will largely remain the same—meaning they will attend the same school and live in the same home, assure them of that. If there is a possibility the children will have to split their living arrangements, prepare them for that as soon as possible. Be sure to inform your children that your intention is to maintain normalcy in their lives, and that both parents will do all they can to make sure they have everything they need.
For help with your Houston or Texas divorce, contact us at Goldsberry & Associates. Our team provides top-notch family law services. Our clients know us for our compassionate methods to get you through your divorce and ensure you and your children’s best interest are protected.