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How to talk to your kids about your divorce

On Behalf of | Aug 22, 2023 | Divorce

When you decide to end your marriage, you know that decision will impact your kids in various ways. It could change where they live, their daily routine and more, and it is helpful to discuss your divorce with them in a thoughtful and intentional manner. Many Colorado parents find it helpful to prepare for that conversation with their kids. You know that it will be a difficult subject, and preparing can help you help your kids as they process this information.

No one knows your kids like you do, which means you can prepare to have this conversation in a way that is meaningful for them. Maintaining a thoughtful approach at every step of the divorce process can be beneficial for your children, starting with this very first discussion. In order to do this, however, you may find it necessary to set aside your own temporary feelings for the benefit of your children.

Preparing for an emotional discussion

When you tell your children that you are divorcing, you are telling your kids that everything about their lives is about to change. Keep this in mind as you break the news, and understand if they react emotionally. The right way to approach this conversation depends largely on the ages of your kids, their maturity levels and other factors. Keep the following in mind as you have this conversation:

  • Preschoolers may have a more difficult time understanding the concept of divorce, so aim to use simple language and explain how it will affect them in language they can easily process.
  • Elementary age kids can understand more, but they will still have some trouble understanding the true impact of a divorce. They may show signs of emotional distress and behavioral changes, and they may need ongoing support.
  • Teens and older kids may have more control over their emotions, but they are still children and will have a difficult time in their own way. Parents should be very clear about the practical effects that the divorce will have on the daily life of the teen.

At every step of the divorce process, you can provide support for your kids. If you are preparing for divorce and want to make the interests of your kids a priority at every step, you will benefit from seeking experienced guidance from the earliest stages and as you are making important custody and visitation decisions.