Divorce is never easy for the spouses going through it. However, it can be particularly hard for any children the couple share. Breaking the news can be particularly challenging for the parents, but it is important to practice what you will say beforehand and ensure the children that this is between the parents. Kids should never feel as though they had a role to play in the divorce.
There is no way to spare a child's feelings entirely. As long as both parents are able to act maturely, they can help their children get through this time much more easily.
1. Reduce any unnecessary transitions
It can take months or over a year for the divorce to be final. During that time, you want to keep things relatively the same around the house. Do not interrupt the children's schedules. You should not expect your child to give up their favorite sports practice so that they can go with you to court. Although some changes are unavoidable, do what you can to minimize them to the best of your ability.
2. Confine negativity
Kids should maintain a level of respect for both parents. Therefore, the parents should avoid having arguments in front of the children. They should also avoid speaking negatively of the other parent when he or she is not around. Chances are good the spouses will split custody, and young kids need to be able to respect both of their parents.
3. Validate children's feelings
During a divorce, it is natural for children to feel angry, sad and resentment. Children may misbehave, and while it is not ideal, it is important to understand where this behavior comes from. You can help ease the transition by encouraging an open line of communication. Encourage your son or daughter to ask questions about the divorce. You should also spend as much time as you can with your kids. This means time free of television or phones.