Divorce is difficult for the couple going through it, but it can be even harder for the children involved. Children do not have some of the advantages the adults going through a divorce do, including knowing why the divorce is happening. For this reason, it is important to understand what to do to properly prepare your children for your divorce and put some of their fears and uncertainties to rest. Below are some important tips to remember when talking to your children about divorce that can help them understand the situation, which can make it easier for them.
Time it Properly
The few minutes you have before you have to run out for soccer practice or a dance rehearsal is not the time to tell your children you and your spouse are getting a divorce. Choose a time when there is nothing on the schedule so everyone can focus on the conversation and allow time for questions to be asked and answered.
Plan What You Will Say
A conversation about divorce is not the time to wing it. Come together with your spouse and plan out what you will say to the children. This may be difficult if there are tense feelings between the two of you, but it is important. Remember to touch on why you need to separate, the plan for moving forward, and lots of reminders that you and your spouse both love the children immensely.
Tell Everyone at the Same Time
You may think that telling the oldest child and letting them break the news to younger children will soften the blow. However, it will do the exact opposite of that. Children that are not told directly by their parents will feel slighted and left out, which will create communication barriers and make the entire process more difficult for everyone.
Children will have a lot of questions after you tell them about the divorce. They may wonder who will get child custody and where they will live, if they can still attend their current school, and whether they will still be able to see their friends. It is important that you not only try to minimize the impact on the kids, but that you also answer all of their questions as openly and honestly as you can.
Do Not Blame Your Spouse
Children tend to understand the need for divorce when each parent takes responsibility for their part in the breakdown of the marriage. Do not blame each other and make sure the children know it is not their fault, as they often believe it is.
Our Michigan Divorce Lawyers can Help Your Family Through Divorce
When you are facing divorce, you will also have lots of questions about the process, and what to expect. You do not have to go through it alone. At Iafrate & Salassa, P.C., our Clinton Township divorce lawyers will answer all of your questions about divorce in Michigan and will help you every step of the way to get the results you need. Call us today or contact us online to arrange a free consultation with one of our attorneys.