The time surrounding a divorce is full of many different emotions for everyone involved. Kids have a particularly difficult time understanding the split and are confused as their family goes from one unit to something different. To help them grasp the situation, take time to talk with your kids in an age-appropriate way to help soothe their concerns and discontent.
Continue reading to learn five important things to tell your children as you discuss your divorce.
1. You Are Not to Blame
Many children find themselves feeling guilty during their parents’ divorce. Because they do not understand why their parents have split up, they tend to think the breakup is because of them or something they did. You must express to them that this is not their fault and, based on their age and what is appropriate, talk to them about why you and your spouse are ending your marriage. Your children will likely have questions, so be ready to answer them honestly.
2. We Love You Just the Same
Some kids might think that your love for them is different because the love between you and your spouse is gone or is different. They may question how love works altogether. Ease your child’s mind by reassuring them that your love for them is the very same. This can be done verbally or in other ways, including spending extra time with them, cuddling, little written notes, or special outings or dates.
3. Your Emotions Are Valid
Your divorce is likely to bring on a wide range of emotions for your family members. Your children must understand that their feelings are normal. In addition to validating the myriad of emotions they are feeling, let them know there is not a one-size-fits-all timeline they need to follow for these emotions to stop.
4. We Are Available and Want to Talk
The emotional and mental toll a divorce brings can be incredibly burdensome to an adult. So much so that children take notice and recluse because they don’t want to add to your stress. Do not let this happen to your kids. Let your kids know that, despite how busy or overwhelmed you are, you are available and want to talk and listen to them. Take time daily to talk to each of your children, one-on-one. Talk to them about the highlights of their day and the low parts, too
5. You Are Not Alone
Coming to terms with this “new normal” can make anyone feel lonely, and children are not exempt. It can be isolating for kids to explain their new situation to their friends. Help them feel less alone by reading stories and books about children and divorce. It can be reassuring for them to know that other kids are going through a similar situation. Support them, love them, and let their friends and extended family members show their love and support.
Contact a Salt Lake City Family Law Attorney
The experts at The Ault Firm understand the difficult time you and your family are experiencing if you are considering divorce or separation. Having a knowledgeable family law attorney represent you can lighten your load and ease your mind. Our team of professionals has years of experience in family law and can help you navigate this trying time. Contact The Ault Firm today to schedule your initial case review.