How To Tell Your Kids You’re Divorcing

There is no escaping the simple fact that going through a divorce is going to cause a lot of upheaval in your life. That upheaval is compounded when kids are part of the picture. It’s one thing if your children are grown up and out of the house. They’ll still be upset but they’ve got their own lives to focus on. When it comes to telling younger kids and teens still living in the home you’ll want to do some prep work with your spouse. Here are some helpful tips you can use in your approach to telling your kids that you’re divorcing.break gold wedding rings

1)     Tell Them Together

No matter how bitter it might be between you two, it is vital that you put forth a united front of love and support for the kids. You and your spouse should make the announcement together as a family. Open with how much you love your kids and use that as your closing argument as well.

2)     Share the Blame

A painless divorce is when both parties agree it’s time to end the marriage. However, that might not always be the case. Regardless of the situation, you should tell your children that the decision was mutually agreed upon. There is always a temptation to “get the last word in” and try to be the hero to your kids. You will be doing them a great disservice if you start this process by dividing the family and forcing your kids to pick sides.

3)     Have the Living Accommodations Worked Out

Before you make the announcement to the kids, you need to work out what this divorce is going to look like. This doesn’t mean you’ve worked out all the details with your divorce lawyer yet. But you need to know who will be moving out of the house? Where will that person be going? You might find that the younger the child the easier it is for them to accept that mommy and daddy will be living in separate homes but that doesn’t mean it will be easy for them to adjust. You need to provide them with the sense that their lives aren’t going to be turned upside down. They’ll still have a place to live, they’ll still be going to school and doing all the things they used to do.

4)     Practice What You’re Going to Say

This is really not a discussion that should come “off the cuff.” You should get together with your spouse and go over what you’re going to say. This practice is perfect to make sure you’ll both be on the same page and you can button up any potential animosity.

As you wrap up the discussion, remind them that they are not the reason the divorce is happening and that they are loved. Then you need to give them time to process this news. You’ll probably find that the kids “shut down” as they sort through their feelings. Don’t wait for them to come back to you. Keep the lines of communication open and frequently check in with your kids to see how they are doing and if they have any follow up concerns.

A divorce means your family is changing but it shouldn’t spell disaster for those involved. Working with a caring Westchester divorce lawyer can help you get through this process.