How to Talk to Your Children About Your Divorce
On November 20, 2014 by Eric Klein
Divorce can be quite gruesome for all involved, including your kids. Make it a little more bearable for them with these key pointers that every transitioning, divorcee parent should know.
Tell the Truth
Kids deserve to know why mom and dad are separating because it equally affects their lives as well. It is important to let them know of any changes in living arrangements, including custody and visitation plans, in advance. Keep them in the loop as much as possible. Regardless of how much or little you decide to share with your children, be honest with what you tell them.
Be Aware of Age and Personality
Understand that children in different age groups require different explanations. Older children require more detail while younger children will be fine with simple, meaningful explanations. Children with milder personalities may internalize their feelings, having a more difficult time coping. Kids with more outgoing personalities may externalize, even throwing fits. Try your best to be understanding.
Avoid the Blame Game
It is wise to present a united front as much as possible. Plan a conversation with your soon to be ex-spouse to agree upon an explanation that you both stick to when presenting the facts to your kids. Show self-restraint by being respectful to each other in this moment. Children often times feel that they are responsible for their parents’ divorce. This is the time to set the record straight and let your kids know that they are not at fault for Mom and Dad’s choice to get divorced.
Listen Acknowledge & Reassure
Encourage and support your children in verbally expressing their feelings without the fear that they may be hurting Mom or Dad’s feelings. Take the time to truly listen and acknowledge their emotional state without being dismissive. Give plenty of reassurance, letting kids know that Mom & Dad still love them. Try your best to foster closeness between kids and both parents with hugs and reassuring messages of love. Let your kids know that everything is going to be ok and mean it.
If you’re seeking legal guidance and representation from an experienced divorce attorney in South Florida, please contact Klein Law Group at 561-220-6659 or fill out the contact form on our website at kleinattorneys.com. We offer a free 30-minute consultation to discuss your individual case in family law, bankruptcy and real estate. Our offices are located in Boca Raton, West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale, Florida.