It may be the most challenging discussion you’ll ever have to tell your children about your pending divorce. Even if the announcement isn’t an enormous surprise – maybe you’re already separated or you’ve been constant arguing – it’s only natural for kids to want their parents and friends to remain together. This dream is tough to have to dash. “This is the conversation that kids will remember throughout their lives,” says M. Gary Neuman, author of divorce help your kid’s cope. There is no perfect way to break the news, but these tips can ease some of the stings.
Present a united front
You and your soon-to-be-ex should sit down together with your kids and clarify the scenario. Even if divorce is not a joint choice, it is best to present it as such and integrate as much as possible the term “we” when explaining the choices taken. “This isn’t the ideal opportunity for charge or harshness,” says Judith Ruskay Rabinor, Ph.D., creator of Befriend your Ex After Divorce: Making Life Better for you, Your Children and Yes, Your Ex. “It’s not about you; It’s about the emotional well-being of your children. ” Additionally, children need to feel confident that their parents can still work together as a parent team to guide and guide them.
Speak to the whole family
Experts agree that it is best to have this discussion with the whole family and then follow up individually with each kid. But if you’re worried that your older child will take the news hard or that her reaction will upset a younger child (a school-age child, after all, understand the concept of divorce more than the pre-school child does), you or your spouse might want to talk to each individual child.
Plan why you’re going to say
This isn’t the kind of discussion you’re improvising. Dr. Neuman advises couples to send key messages they believe are important for their children to hear. Parents could take turns, for example, to cover there important points:
- “You know there were problems with mom and dad. We tried to fix this, but things didn’t work out”.
- “We appreciate you both very much. There’s nothing going to alter that love or the fact that we’re always here for you”.
- “We’re always going to be your mom and dad, but we’re no longer going to be the husband and wife, your father [ or mother ] and I get a divorce”.
- “You are great children. It’s our fault — not yours — that this happens”.
- “We will always be a family, even though things will change”.
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