A divorce is a complicated experience, especially when you have a child to consider. As uncomfortable as it may be, discussing this life change is necessary.
Here are five tips to make talking with your child about divorce easier and more peaceful.
1. Make post-divorce plans first
Prematurely telling your child about the divorce can lead to chaos if you do not have the answers to their questions. Have a plan for an expected timeline and living arrangements to reduce the overwhelm your child may feel as they enter a world of unknowns.
2. Deliver the news together
Try collaborating with your spouse to inform your child of what will come. Presenting a united front can assure your child that, even though you will not remain a couple, you both will keep their best interests at heart.
3. Stay calm
Divorce is stressful, but do your best to stay calm when sharing the news with your child, as your temperament may affect how they process the information. Remain mindful of this throughout the divorce, as well.
4. Avoid blame
Whatever the reason for your divorce, pointing fingers when telling your child about it will not lay the foundation for an amicable separation. Simple explanations are sufficient and can help reduce the tension your child may experience.
5. Be careful with your choice of words
Depending on your child’s age, they may remember the divorce conversation forever. Choose your words carefully and consider the lasting impact they may have.
Divorce is a substantial life change for your whole family, but you can take proactive steps to make the process smoother. Keep these five tips in mind as you plan to discuss divorce with your child.