When parents divorce, everyone in the family ends up affected by it. You and your co-parent have a lot of emotional work to do. The toll of divorce is often very physically and mentally draining.
As parents, you likely spend most of your time and energy on your child. It is equally important to make sure they get through the divorce, too. To ensure this happens, you want to provide them with as much support as possible.
Tailor your conversation to your child
According to Psychology Today, there is no perfect answer for talking to your kid about divorce. Each child will react differently. As such, the first piece of advice is always to tailor the conversation for your unique child.
Age, maturity level and personality all affect how your child will respond to news of the divorce. Some children take it better than others. Some may lash out while others may withdraw. Many children end up conflicted by grief and feelings of guilt. You know your child best. Thus, you are in the best position to choose how to tell them.
Present a unified front
Some tips are universal, though:
- Do not argue with your co-parent in front of your child.
- Do not blame your child for the divorce.
- Do not over-explain the divorce, or tell your child personal information about it.
- Stay on the same page as your co-parent.
- Present a unified front.
- Give your child as much information as you can about what the future will look like.
Taking away some of the unknown elements can make it easier to handle divorce.