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How to Talk to Your Kid about Divorce: Your Guide

How to Talk to Your Kid About Divorce

Did you know that it takes about 2 years for children to adjust to their parents getting divorced in the United States?

Separation can result in unpredictable times for your child, talking to them about it can help clear up confusion and concerns.

If you want to rise out of the divorce with your child being stronger than ever, you need to watch how you communicate.

Keep reading to learn some of the best tips on how to talk to your kid about divorce so that healing can begin!

Focus on Your Child

One of the first steps in learning how to talk to your kid about divorce can be intimidating since you don’t want to upset them.

Even if it’s the worst age for divorce for children, if you and your partner prioritize them over personal feelings, your child should be okay. Many parents make the mistake of making the divorce all about them if they are angry but that only hurts your child. Try limiting how much you open up to them and listen.

When your child still gets the attention and love that they need, separation won’t be as difficult. It is better to help your child become resilient with other positive things. Make sure that you and your partner are still showing up for your kid, and put the drama aside.

Be Kind

A lot of emotions come into play during divorce and you might struggle to be kind at times.

Although you might see the person you are leaving in your child, none of this was their fault. You should always be kind to your child when talking to them and don’t get mad if they talk about their other parent.

This also means that you should be kind when talking about your soon-to-be ex-partner. At the end of the day, your child will be able to heal in a protective and kind environment. It is often when parents aren’t kind that children act out or repress their anger.

Avoid Negative Talk

No matter how upset you are with the other person, you should always avoid negative talk with your child.

Talking negatively about others to your child teaches them that it’s okay to do. It also makes them feel like they need to pick a side for their parents, otherwise, one will be upset with them. Another reason to avoid negative comments is that it isn’t a good reflection of who you should want to be for your child.

If you teach your child to be negative, they will grow up thinking that that’s the only option they have. Don’t let your unsuccessful relationship define the rest of your child’s life and mindset.

Stay Honest

Although you don’t need to go into every detail, you should be honest when talking to your kids.

Learning how to tell your teenager you are getting a divorce is intimidating since they can observe what has happened. Instead of trying to hide what is going on, explain it to them in a gentle way and don’t stray from the truth.

When parents start lying to their children during divorce, they aren’t able to trust the two people in the world that they thought they could. Honestly is the best policy and will teach your child to own up to their life.

breakup family and hand holding picture

Listen & Answer Questions

When you are getting a divorce, you might want to express feeling more often, however, listening is still important.

Talking to your child about the divorce is essential, but this should be in the form of a conversation, not a lecture. Listen to your child when they want to talk about certain memories or have questions. Helping your child understand the situation will provide them with some comfort.

Do your best to avoid getting upset over certain questions. If it wasn’t for the divorce, your child wouldn’t have to concern themselves over these things. Be patient and understanding while they express their feelings.

Make a Plan

Some divorces take years to finalize and the parents don’t move apart until years down the road.

In other instances, however, changes can happen overnight. No matter what your situation is, try to make a plan with your child. The other parent should be involved in this conversation so that everyone feels involved.

In some cases of cheating, some parents are kept away. You can find out here how the judges handle the situation. Understanding the processes will help you prepare your child to navigate through the unexpected with you. This tip is especially important if your child will be moving to a new home, stopping seeing a parent, or changing schools.

Provide Comfort

Is there a fun routine that you have with your child during the week?

Sticking with old routines and traditions can provide comfort to your child during unstable times. If your child isn’t talking as much, you might be creating an environment that they don’t feel comfortable opening up in.

Restrain yourself as your child learns about the divorce and don’t bring them into the middle of your relationship.

Do you Know how to Talk to Your Kid about Divorce?

If you are worried that you don’t know how to talk to your kid about divorce, you should start with the truth.

Waiting to divorce might seem beneficial to kids, but it often puts them in tougher situations. Work with your significant other, even after the divorce is finalized. Your child is the most important factor, so don’t lose sight of them between your emotions.

Don’t be afraid to talk to others for help, divorce can be frustrating but it can also turn into something more positive and healthy.

How to Talk to Your Kid about Divorce: Your Guide

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