5 Tips For Talking To Your Children About Divorce
Tip #1: It’s not their fault:
Children tend to assume they’re at fault when mom and dad break up, as unreasonable as it seems. They feel as if they had made better grades, behaved better, or didn’t misbehave, that their parents would get along better. Tell your child that they are not to blame at all. But be honest with them about the problems between you and your ex without placing blame on either of you. Explain how it is a joint decision.
Tip #2: Reassure, reassure, reassure:
Pick a time that doesn’t conflict with tests or special occasions to talk about the breakup. Be willing to talk again when your children have questions and that you’ll answer them as best you can. A break-up means the end of the life your children have known. It is a loss that they will feel deeply. Let them be honest in expressing their feelings, even if it’s uncomfortable for you.
Tip #3: Provide stability and routine:
Tell your children the things that are going to change, and how the family will be dealing with these changes. But, more importantly, stress the things that will stay the same, i.e., their bedroom, house rules, and your love for them.
Tip #4: Be committed to listening:
Listen with understanding when your children vent anger, or seem dejected and aloof. Try to encourage talk at those times, to let them know you care, and that their feelings are normal. Support them by telling them that you’ll deal with each detail together, as it comes up.
Tip #5: Say only positive things:
Try to say only positive things about your ex-spouse, unless that’s totally not possible. In that case, it is better that you don’t say anything! Try not to burden your children with the issues that are breaking you and your spouse up. Children will begin to feel that they must choose, or take sides with, one or the other parent. This is not good for them or you.
By being considerate with your children about your divorce, you can ease their tensions. Focus on supporting them and they will emerge from the turmoil of emotions a lot more confident and strong. And above all, feel loved.
Written by: Ruby Mosely,Rust Built, Marketing Services