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What to expect when you tell your kids that you’re divorcing

On Behalf of | Apr 15, 2024 | Divorce

When divorce is a huge possibility, it’s never just you affected. Unfortunately, now you have to tell your children what will happen. Telling your kids you’re breaking up is never easy. What should you expect when you tell them the news?

Here’s a guide on what to anticipate to prepare for their reactions.

An outpouring of emotions

Children are sensitive, and their emotions can be quite raw when faced with the news of a divorce. Some may react with shock, others with sadness and some may even express anger.

They may also feel a sense of guilt, mistakenly believing they played a part in the situation. It’s important to be prepared for these reactions and be ready to provide comfort and reassurance.

A barrage of questions

Your children will most likely have many questions about the divorce. “Why is this happening?” “Where will we live?” “Will I still get to see both of you?” You should prepare to answer these questions honestly but in a way that is appropriate for their age and understanding.

If there are things you are still figuring out, it’s ok to tell them that but assure them that you will keep them informed.

They may need time to adjust

Every child will handle the news of a divorce differently. Some might seem to accept it quickly, while others may need more time to process the information.

During this period, they might experience a variety of changes, such as mood swings, difficulty sleeping or changes in their academic performance. It’s crucial to give them the space they need to adjust while also monitoring their coping mechanisms.

They need to know what’s next

Your children might have concerns about the changes in their living arrangements, such as where they will live, how often they will see each parent and how they will spend holidays. These are not questions that you can answer hastily. You should start the divorce process first before making any promises.

While it’s important to communicate that changes will occur, reassuring them that both parents will strive to ensure their well-being throughout the process is equally important. A legal professional can be beneficial here. They can help you start the divorce process with your and your children’s best interests in mind.

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