It’s no secret that divorce is difficult for everyone involved. It brings about many life changes and transitions that can shake up a household. As difficult as it is for you, it can be that much more difficult for your children.
Children Need Help Adjusting to Life Changes
Children, especially young children, are creatures of habit. They love routine. When their routine changes, they often experience irritability, sadness, anger and general moodiness. Some children may regress to earlier behaviors. For example, potty trained children may begin having accidents throughout the day.
To help combat these effects of change, children need patience, open communication and ongoing support to adjust.
5 Tips for Preparing Your Children for Divorce
If you’re preparing for a divorce, it’s critical to do what you can to prepare your children as well. Here are some tips you can use throughout the process.
- Speak about the divorce: It’s important to sit down with your children and discuss the upcoming divorce. Although young children may not grasp the situation fully, they’ll understand that change is coming. Talking to your children early will help them process slowly, instead of feeling overwhelmed later on.
- Stick to a routine: Try your best to keep everything else as normal as possible. You will need to work with your current spouse to ensure the routine stays intact, especially if you’re living separately.
- Have patience: Some emotional response is expected, regardless of the age of your children. Remember to be patient, listen to your children and try to put yourself in their shoes.
- Always reassure: Remember that children need to hear that whatever happens between their parents isn’t their fault. This will help stifle any guilt or fear that your child might have about the upcoming divorce. Reassure them and do so frequently.
- Listen and communicate: Ask your children how they’re feeling and what they’re thinking. Listen to what they have to say. Keep an open door of communication, allowing your children to ask questions and come to you with their concerns. Although you may feel uncomfortable or that the divorce is better kept hidden from your children, this isn’t true.
Considering Divorce? Reach Out to an Experienced Attorney.
Are you considering a divorce? If so, we recommend reaching out to an experienced attorney who understands the unique dynamic of families with children. To learn more, send us a message.