It can be difficult to sit down with your children and have a conversation about divorce. You know that it’s going to be hard for them, even if you and your spouse both agree that divorce is what you want and that it’s going to be better in the long run.
To help you navigate this conversation successfully, here are a few tips from divorce experts.
Bring it up when you have time to talk
Ideally, you want to start this conversation when there are no deadlines, and you have nothing else on the schedule for the day. This way, you and the children can discuss the divorce for as long as necessary without any outside pressure.
Make it a family event
Consider if having this conversation when your entire family is in the room together is the best way to discuss the situation. For one thing, you and your spouse want to present a united front to your children, even though you’re getting divorced. For another, you may want to make sure that all of the children find out at the same time, so they don’t learn it from someone else. Before reaching this decision, you and your spouse may want to jointly discuss it with a psychologist or other mental health professional who works with families going through this transition.
Focus on reassuring the children
As an adult, your focus is probably on the divorce process, the assets that you’re entitled to, and how to spend time with your children after the divorce. Children are often more focused on things like whether or not they get to see their parents or if they’re going to have to move away from their friends. It’s important to reassure them and let them know that you love them no matter what. Try to make them feel confident and stress the stability that will be retained even through the divorce.
Getting divorced with children can be a very complicated process, and you certainly want to spend time with them afterward, so be sure you understand all of your parental rights and legal options.