Going through a divorce is never easy, and if you have kids, the situation disrupts their lives as well.
Divorce affects all children, no matter their ages. However, the effects are often less when the parents take the right approach to tell the kids about it.
Take a united approach
According to Psychology Today, the effects of divorce tend not to be as severe when the ex-spouses show a united front as parents, and telling the kids about divorce is no exception. They should share the news as soon as possible to avoid the children hearing it from someone else. When explaining the situation, they should not place blame.
Plan for the conversation
Before sitting down to talk with the kids, the soon-to-be exes should plan what they are going to say. If they have difficulty figuring out what to say, a third party may help guide the conversation. The parents should also plan the conversation at a time when there are no time constraints.
Explain how things will change or stay the same
Children, especially younger ones, do better if they know what to expect. Parents should be clear about who is moving out when the kids will spend time with each parent and other ways things will change or remain the same.
Be open to their emotions
Kids react differently to the news of divorce, and their emotions may depend on their personalities and ages. Parents should allow them to express whatever they are feeling. Some children may need time to process the information and will have to follow up questions in the future.
One important part of the process is to reassure the kids that what is happening has nothing to do with them and that both parents will always love and be there for them.