Divorce is an uncomfortable topic to discuss for every couple. It is especially difficult if you have children. There is no easy way to bring up the topic with your children but if the marriage relationship is indeed finished and moving towards divorce, it is best to have a conversation about what to expect going forward with your kids. During this conversation with your children you need to communicate a few key concepts so they have a greater sense of peace and security as their life goes through this drastic change.
IT IS NOT THEIR FAULT
This is a crucial point to emphasis to your children. Kids will almost always turn to blaming themselves for the divorce and feel that the divorce is their fault. They will undoubtedly believe that if they did something differently or behaved better that it would not have happened. Because of this it is important that your children hear it directly when they first learn about the impending divorce but also frequently from both parents as time goes on. This will give them reassurance that the decision for the divorce came solely from the parents and completely separate from them.
THEY ARE STILL LOVED
Another message that should be emphasized during your conversation with your children is that they are still loved by both parents. Like mentioned before, kids will blame themselves for the divorce and they will also feel that they are not loved because the marriage is splitting up. By having both parents tell the kids that they are loved and by communicating it often after the divorce is finalized, the children will learn that they are loved even though their parents live separately.
THEY ARE SAFE
A third point that should be talked about during your meeting with your kids is that they will remain safe even though their sense of belonging and security will be upset in the divorce. For children, they find their safety directly from their parents and the environment that the parents establish in the home. When this is altered, or in the case of divorce drastically changed, children can feel lost and lose their sense of safety. Parents should make sure to communicate plans, timelines and expectations so the kids can start to re-establish a sense of security in the new living arrangement. Parents should be working extra hard to communicate these types of details so the kids can start to build up their sense of security in the new family model.
Divorce is a hard decision to arrive at and hopefully every action is taken beforehand to ensure that it is the best course of action. If you find yourself needing solid legal advice and someone that can help you through the trouble spots and pitfalls of a divorce, contact Andrews & Arbenz to serve as custody lawyers for your family. We have a wealth of experience in representing parents from all walks of life and can help you navigate your situation so that you can arrive at the most peaceful resolution possible and put your children in the best situation to build up their trust and sense of security.