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How to Explain Divorce to Your Children

Children often have a tough time grasping the gravity of divorce, making it one of the most challenging things parents have to do in the divorce process. Here we outline some helpful tips to gently break the news in a way that will have minimal effects on your children’s wellbeing.

Don’t Wait

The sooner you tell your children about the situation, however, the better. Waiting around can only make things harder for them and you. If you want to discuss the problem with your children, you should set aside an appropriate time. You don’t want to overwhelm them in the middle of the week when they’re preoccupied with school and recreational activities. For example, try to catch them on a weekend or any time where they will have time to calm down and process the news afterward.

What to Say

Tell your children you’re going to be open, honest, and candid with them. Clarify why you’re going to be splitting up. Make sure that they understand that the split has absolutely nothing to do with them. Tell them that it doesn’t interfere with how much you or your spouse love them, either. It’s critical to do this as a means of steering clear of confusion.

Explain What Will and Will Not Change

Talk to your children about how you believe their lives may change. Tell them that you plan to work with their other parents to keep things as smooth and predictable as possible for them. Encourage your kids to ask you as many questions as they need to attain clarity. You don’t want to make your kids feel like anything is top secret. The more you encourage your children to talk, the less likely they’ll keep things bottled up inside.

It can be optimal to speak to your children right next to your ex. If you’re unable to do so, that’s fine as well. Just make sure your children can reach both of you with any questions that may pop up in their impressionable brains. If you feel like this news may be particularly troubling to them, you can give them books that may help them cope. It may even be a good idea to set up an appointment with a therapist.

If you’re searching for a capable and skilled divorce attorney who can assist you with your divorce and custody matters, call Benouis Law at 512-764-3932 as soon as possible to request a consultation with our compassionate family law team.