When you’re filing for a divorce in Tennessee, there are a lot of issues to handle. If you have children, you have a different set of concerns, such as how to break the news to your kids and developing a co-parenting plan.
Anticipate their questions
Before you sit down with your kids to let them know about the divorce, you should make a list of all the questions you think they’ll have. Starting the conversation prepared will help you better answer their questions. Children will often want to know if they will continue living in the family home and which parent they will live with. They may also ask what will happen during holidays and if they’ll need to change schools.
If there’s an aspect of your divorce that you and your spouse haven’t come to a final decision on yet, then let your kids know that you’re still thinking about it and you will let them know once you and their other parent have figured it out. Older children may offer their input on their own accord, which can help you and the other parent create a parenting plan that works for them. The parenting plan should minimize stress on your children as much as possible.
You and the other parent should reassure them that you will always love them. Children worry that if their parents stopped loving each other, then one day they will stop loving them too. Young children need frequent reminders that you will always love them. They also require more hugs and attention for reassurance.
Allow them to be upset
Be understanding that your kids may show signs of being upset. Some might even have an angry outburst. It’s important to allow your kids to feel their feelings so that they don’t suppress them. At the same time, don’t let yourself become consumed with guilt. It’s important to forgive yourself in order to move forward and do the best you can.
No one knows for certain how the conversation will go when you bring up the divorce to your children. However, you can prepare for the conversation and give them time to process their emotions from the news.