Talking to Your Kids About Divorce
While divorce is a topic that every married couple wishes to avoid, there are times when a relationship is simply irreparable and it is best to move on. In a perfect world, divorce would only happen to childless couples, but this is not the case. If you and your current spouse are considering a divorce, there are a few important things you need to know that will help you break the news to your children.
Every divorce is completely unique, and the same can be said about the relationship you share with your children. Unfortunately, there is no cookie-cutter solution that suits every couple when it comes to notifying children of a pending divorce. However, there are certain helpful tips that will allow you to break this life-altering news to them in a mature, calm, and educational manner.
Write It Out
Perhaps the best thing that you could ever do when planning to tell your children about a divorce is first writing your thoughts down on paper. Explaining why your marriage deteriorated is never an easy task, and it becomes even more difficult when you are looking into the eyes of your child. Therefore, you need a definitive and comprehensive explanation handy that objectively details your current relationship with your spouse. When things start to get emotional, look down at your notes and gather yourself before continuing.
Schedule the Conversation
Another crucial thing to keep in mind when talking to your children about a divorce is scheduling. While you may not realize this now, the moment you notify your children of the divorce will be a moment they remember for the rest of their lives. This is not a conversation that can wait until 20 minutes before bedtime, and it certainly is not a conversation that can be had on the way to work or school. Instead, you need to calmly tell your children that you need to have a talk with them and block out at least one hour of your time to account for the many questions they may have.
Additionally, you should do everything in your power to ensure that the divorce will not impact your child’s daily routine. Explaining a divorce is not a “one-off” job, and it is something you’ll likely be doing for the next couple of years. If you immediately thrust your child into a whirlwind of emotions—forcing them to change schools and make new friends—they may begin to feel resentment toward. Instead, you need to keep things as normal as possible while also offering a trusted support system if they ever need someone to talk to. While this news is still fresh in their minds, you may need to rearrange your own schedule to make sure that you’re available for your children at all hours of the day.
Be Open and Honest
Lastly, explaining a divorce to your children is all about honesty. Lying about the cause of your divorce will do you no good, as they will find out the truth sooner or later as they grow older. Your children see you as a perfect being, whether you like it or not, and you need to be as strong and truthful as possible when explaining your situation.
Divorces can be quite complex, and you need an experienced divorce attorney to get through this trying time. There are multiple components to a divorce case, including but not limited to: alimony, child support, child custody, division of assets, etc. An experienced Huntsville divorce attorney knows the specific laws surrounding divorce in Alabama and can guide you through the process in a professional manner. Call Martinson and Beason, P.C today to schedule a consultation so you can start spending more time with your children and less time in the courtroom.