How to Tell your Children about Divorce


Whether it is the spouses or their families, divorce is not easy. But, it can be especially troubling, traumatic, and emotional for the children.

According to the World Psychiatry report, parental divorce can increase children’s risk of adjustment issues — including focus issues, disruptive and rash behaviors, and PTSD. Some children can develop a sense of self-blame and consider themselves the cause of separation between their parents. This can be detrimental to their physical, emotional, and psychological well-being. 

Divorce Attorneys can help 

Telling your children about divorce is never easy, but it can be a bit less daunting with the help of divorce experts. Discussion with your divorce attorney on how to broach the subject of divorce with your children is a pre-requisite. Divorce lawyers deal with the stressful marathon of divorces on a daily basis, and there is not much they haven’t already seen. Before meeting with a lawyer for a divorce, prepare a list of possible questions and revisit them during the consultation. It helps you clear up your mind and give you a perspective look at your case. 

How to tell kids about divorce 

Prepare yourself for the talk and anticipate questions 

Planning what you’ll say and how you’ll say it helps a lot when it comes to breaking the news of divorce to your children. Sometimes, the place also matters. Carefully plan how you’ll broach the subject but be mindful of your choice of words and tone. A little empathy and a friendly demeanor can be fruitful. 

  • Be upfront: Try to be honest and upfront without saying unnecessary things.
  • Show them love: Tell them they’re equally important, and nothing will change the fact that you love them.
  • Be logical: Give them logical reasons why it cannot work out between their parents. 
  • Involve the other parent: If possible, involve your partner in this conversation. 
  • Deal with your anxieties first: If you have anxiety be mindful to deal with it before your conversation with the children. You would not need to overburden them with your grief and anxiety too.

Be honest about the changes that will happen

Of course, not all things will remain the same in your lives, and you have to tell this to your children as truthfully as possible. But, be sure to give an assurance that some things would still be the same even when you and your spouse are separating. Be loving, compassionate, and understanding to your children.  

  • Be affectionate: Tell them you love them.
  • No drama: You will do your level best to avoid conflict.
  • No blame: Assure them they’re not the reason for your separation.
  • Be simple with reasons: Stick to brief reasons to avoid confusing them

Offer them help during the difficult process of acceptance

Some children take longer than others to accept that their parents will not be living together with anyone. Always offer them help and support and give them time to accept the realities gradually. Don’t over-share, and be as diligent as possible. 

  – Be present for them: Some parents are so stressed out during divorce that they unavoidably can’t find time for their children. Listen to what your children have to say. Don’t push them away from you or invalidate their feelings when they’re trying to express themselves.

  – Don’t push them to get over it: Children take time as they mature and begin seeing things differently. If your children don’t understand the reasons behind your separation, don’t push them to accept it. They will accept them in their own time and age. Show love even when they don’t support your reasons.  

 Keep your well-being in mind too

The children would be disturbed to see you out of sorts, and it will be emotionally painful for them that you’re not doing well. Maintain a healthy lifestyle. Eat well, sleep well and see your friends. If you’re struggling with post-divorce stress, do not postpone seeing a therapist. Just remember, your children need you.  

Provide stability through the divorce 

The most important thing is to provide your children with the stability they had when their parents were together. Quite understandably, they don’t want to lose the sense of family and the familiar routine of their lives. Maintain a cooperative relationship with your ex-spouse about decisions involving the well-being of your children. Set ego aside when sitting down to discuss the issues that have a bearing on the future and interests of the kids. Don’t let your difference come in the way of making a rational decision about the future and risk resentment of the children for being selfish. Children want both of their parents too;  

  • Be involved in their lives during and after the divorce, so they don’t have to choose between them.
  • Get along with each other about matters important to the children.
  • Avoid jealousy, resentment, and emotional manipulation to get more time with the children against their ex-spouse. 
  • Not severe direct communication.
  • Avoid pushing your children to take sides by saying demeaning or insulting words about their other parents. Such behavior is highly discouraged, especially during divorce.
  • Understand your children’s need to love both of their parents. They want the involvement and presence of both parents in their lives. 

Bottom Line  

Never hesitate or avoid discussing divorce-related issues with your divorce attorney — whether it is a contested or uncontested divorce. There are uncontested divorce attorneys in Summerlin who offer affordable consultations. Moreover, keep in touch with your children’s doctors, teachers, friends, or therapists to cope with any problems they might face. Finally, take care of yourself, and for your family and your sake, don’t ignore taking care of yourself. There are experts who can help you in this tremulous time of your life, and don’t hesitate to reach out for help. 


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