Divorce can be an emotionally challenging experience, especially when a child is in the mix. You only get one chance to break the news about your decision.
That said, it is within your abilities to handle the task with sensitivity and grace. A bit of guidance on the best way to approach this conversation can be helpful.
Tip #1: Choose the right time and place
Find a quiet, comfortable, private space that will accommodate speaking frankly without interruption. Avoid raising the topic at bedtime or minutes before the school bus arrives.
Tip #2: Prepare what you want to say
Before broaching the topic, think carefully about how you will deliver the message. Keep phrasing simple and age-appropriate. Be honest about the situation and avoid placing blame on anyone. It may be reassuring to point out that many children are in similar positions; only 70% of American kids live with both of their parents.
Tip #3: Encourage questions
Allow your son or daughter to ask questions and express concerns. Be patient and attentive when they do. Answer their queries truthfully, but avoid sharing unnecessary details or negativity.
Tip #4: Follow up and stay available
After the initial conversation, continue to check in with your little one. Vocalize that you are always available to listen to their thoughts and feelings on the split.
Divorce is tough on children, but open communication can help juveniles navigate this transition. Remember that the emotional wellness of your child should remain a top priority. It is your responsibility to handle the moment with care and tenderness.