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Three tips for breaking the news of your divorce to your child

On Behalf of | Apr 26, 2021 | Divorce |

Parents in may have a happy marriage for a while, but sometimes things break down and they decide it is best to part ways and divorce. While divorce can be stressful for parents in Pensacola, it can also be confusing, stressful and upsetting for their child as well. The following are some tips on how to break the news of your divorce to your child.

Time the conversation right

According to some experts, the timing of the conversation is key. You may not want to tell your child about your decision to divorce until a definite decision is made and the separation will happen soon. However, you do not want to simply share the news and then have one parent move out the next day. Parents should provide children with the time needed to process the information and ask questions.

Break the news with together with your spouse

Parents need to present a united front when breaking the news of their divorce to their child. They should plan in advance what they will say, how they will say it, and they should break the news of their divorce together. This helps establish a positive tone for their future roles as co-parents. It is important that parents let their child know that the divorce is a joint decision. Speak in the “we” rather than “I.” And do not do things that force a child to pick sides.

Take your child’s age into account

If you have more than one child, you should initially break the news of your divorce to all your children at once. This conversation should cover just the basics. Then, you can follow up with age-appropriate discussions for each child.

For example, young children may need to be reassured that they are not to blame for the divorce, nor can they fix their parents’ marriage. In addition, you may want to use clear, simple language with young children and limit the information given to just what they need to know.

Older children, on the other hand, may have more questions as they process their feelings. You can answer their questions, but there is no need to share adult situations, such as affairs. In addition, even older children need to be reassured that they are not the cause of the divorce, and that you will always love them and will never stop being their parent.

Learn more about divorce in Florida

Breaking the news of your divorce to your child may not be easy, but, if done right, can help a child make sense of the divorce and can open the door to positive and effective conversations moving forward. This post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Our firm’s website on child custody may be a useful resource to parents who have made the decision to get a divorce.


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