You and your spouse decided that it is better for the two of you to divorce. You feel confident in your decision, but you feel clueless about how to share the news with your shared children.
Get tips on telling kids about divorce healthily and productively. The right words can help your kids and your relationship more than you realize.
Break the news together
You and the other parent must share the news together. Doing so helps maintain the united front your kids are likely used to seeing, and it lets them know that the two of you remain committed to raising them and being there for them. Together.
Also, tell all your kids together at the same time. You do not want your youngest child to hear the news from your oldest child, or vice versa.
Decide what you must say
Your kids need not hear every sordid detail of your divorce, but they deserve to know the basics. Do you and your current spouse plan to remain in your marital home together? How might your kids’ lives change? Writing your talking points helps you both keep from speaking impulsively, which may backfire.
Do not assign blame
Touching back on specific details of your divorce, do not assign fault to anyone, no matter how tempting doing so may be. When divorcing parents assign blame for the split, kids may feel torn between deciding which “side” to take. When possible, use the word “we.” This discussion is for your kids, not you and your spouse, so stay focused on their happiness and peace of mind.
Telling your kids about their parents divorcing is no simple task. Hopefully, you have a better idea of where and how to open this vital conversation.