Without a doubt, one of the most difficult parts of divorce or a romantic breakup is telling the news to your children. Even if there has been contention in the home for some time, no child expects a divorce to happen, and all of the changes that come with the announcement of divorce can be overwhelming. There are a few ways to ease you child’s anxiety.
- Make a plan. Don’t let this important conversation happen in a heated moment. Agree with your spouse on a calm time when you can sit the children down and really talk. Understand that this is not a quick or a one-time conversation and create age-appropriate talking points for the two of you to use to explain why this is happening. You should both be talking from the same script so you’re prepared when the children ask questions.
- Present a united front. You may not agree on much these days but protecting your children should always be a priority. What’s best for your child is to have a healthy relationship with BOTH parents. That’s difficult to do if one parent is tearing down the other parent. Let your child know it’s OK to love both of you and remember to refrain from saying anything negative about the other parent.
- Ask for your children’s thoughts. They may not have words to express themselves right away. They may not know what divorce really means for their future. They may be confused or even worried about their future. Check in with them regularly to make sure they understand what is happening and provide them any needed reassurance.
Divorce is never easy and it’s especially not easy on a child but with the right approach a child’s stability can be preserved and the child can go on loving both parents without feeling guilty. Many more details will be outlined in your parenting plan. If you need help drafting that parenting plan or enforcing it with legal action, please reach out to me.
Pangerl Law Firm P.L.L.C. focuses on divorce, child custody, mother’s and father’s rights, child support, and all other areas of family law, as well as personal injury claims. Our office is located in Deer Valley and serves the greater Phoenix area, including the communities of Scottsdale, Peoria, Glendale, Cave Creek, Avondale, Goodyear, Surprise, Mesa, Tempe, Anthem, New River, North Phoenix and Phoenix. For more information, call: 602-942-6200.