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Preparing to tell your kids about your divorce

If you and your spouse have decided to divorce, you may have many concerns about the future. You may be concerned with splitting up your possessions, adjusting your budget to fit a single income and navigating mutual relationships. If you are a parent, you may also be concerned about telling your kids that you have decided to pursue a divorce.

It can be difficult to tell kids about a decision to divorce, no matter how old they are or how supportive they may ultimately be. When preparing to break this news to your child or children, it is important to keep the message age-appropriate. If you have questions about what an age-appropriate message might be for your kids in particular, please head down to your local library or bookstore and browse many of the parenting titles designed to help you with age-appropriate communication.

It may also greatly help you to write out your message and communicate with your co-parent about your thoughts before you tell your child or children. The last thing that your kids need is co-parenting chaos to start with the announcement of your divorce.

Finally, it is important that you consider your child’s unique needs and concerns while you are crafting your approach. For example, your child may thrive on routine and may be frightened by the potential upset of that routine. Speaking about how you will all work to make the transition as smooth as possible and how you will upset his or her routine as little as possible may uniquely comfort your child in particular.

Source: The Huffington Post, “9 Tips for Breaking Bad News to Kids,” Armin Brott, July 30, 2014

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