Going Through a Divorce: When Do You Have ‘the Talk’ With the Kids?
Though 2019 saw a 50-year low, divorce rates are on the rise again in 2020. Psychologists say the Covid-19 pandemic and stay-at-home restrictions are the main cause. As more couples stayed home, small resentments they ignored surfaced.
Going through a divorce is stressful enough without kids. If there are children involved, how do you tell them? When do you tell them?
You and your estranged spouse might not see eye-to-eye on much anymore, but you have to reach a consensus on this important aspect of separating and divorcing. Here is some guidance on how and when to talk to your children about your divorce.
Do It Together
While healthy communication between you and your soon-to-be-ex probably broke down a long time ago, it’s best to present a unified front when you break the news to your children.
Telling the children about divorce together signals a unity in separation that can’t be expressed separately. The last thing you want is for your children to feel as though one parent will be absent from their lives.
When you have this talk together, you need to remain calm and mature. A divorce is stressful enough for your kids, and they don’t need to be a party to whatever vicious conflicts may have already occurred.
Remember, you and your spouse are not the only ones who experience the pain of divorce. You both need to show empathy and compassion toward your children.
Have a Plan
When you talk to your kids about separation, you and your spouse need to have a plan. If possible, it’s best to have all the details worked out about how your separation will work. Remember, your kids don’t care about your finances.
There will be questions, and it’s best for your kids if you know how to answer them. They’ll want to know who they’ll live with, whether they’re moving, and their schooling situation.
It’s understandable if you don’t have all these details worked out. Custody conflicts that come with divorce can be a challenge to work out. It’s best that you and your spouse consider the mental health of your children during this time.
Don’t let them live in mystery. Have as much of a plan as possible so you can answer their many questions.
Don’t Do It Immediately
Getting a divorce isn’t something that happens overnight. For many couples, a divorce is a conclusion to a long, and painful struggle.
If you or your spouse decided you cannot repair what’s broken, there is a lot to work out before talking to your children. You don’t need to do it right away.
The strategy is important. You and your former partner need to collaborate on when the best time is. Don’t do it when conflict runs hot and emotions are high. Pick a time when you both have the opportunity for a long discussion.
Get Help Going Through a Divorce
Going through a divorce presents so many financial and emotional challenges. The ending of a marriage can get complicated and messy, but you need to spare your children from that.
How to tell your kids you’re getting divorced? It’s best to have the talk with them together after you’ve collaborated on a plan. Remember, the right time isn’t right away.
If you’re getting a divorce, it’s best to retain legal help you can trust. Contact us today for a consultation.