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3 tips for telling your children about the divorce

For parents, it’s possible that the hardest part of your divorce is figuring out how to help your children. These complicated adult matters are hard for children to understand, so the first step of explaining divorce to them is crucial.

This conversation could affect how they view relationships and perceive their own role in the family. To facilitate a healthy discussion, you can try the following guidelines as well as seek advice from your attorney about how you can better help your children.

#1: Remain calm and neutral

When you are going through the early stages of divorce, you probably feel many emotions. Although children might not understand why you feel these ways, they are still affected by your mood. Extreme displays of emotions, such as shouting or breaking household items, can frighten and confuse them. Instead, you should use a calm tone of voice and avoid insults or instigating a fight with the other parent.

#2: Filter the details

Your children will probably ask why the divorce is happening. Even if you are tempted to blame your spouse for failing the family, state the facts without revealing adult matters. While it’s reasonable to say that your spouse acted wrongly, you might not want to provide particulars. Your children have a right to know why this change is necessary, but they don’t need to know everything.

#3: Reinforce your love for them

The news might make your children worry about what this means for them. Will they never see mom again? Is their family and childhood over?

The most important part of this discussion is to let your children know that their parents still love them. Although the family structure may shift, your children still have family. If your divorce is still in the early stages and you aren’t sure about co-parenting or visitation matters, you can tell your children that whatever happens they will still have a loving home.

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