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Five Tips for Telling Your Children About the Divorce

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Sponsored Content, By Angelica Rolong Cormier

The divorce process is a very trying time for divorcing spouses, but the impact of the divorce is even greater for any children involved. Telling your children about the divorce may invoke feelings of sadness, anger and guilt. However, you must consider this conversation is one your children will remember. How should divorcing parents approach their children about the changes to come? Here are five tips for telling your children about the divorce.

1. Choose the appropriate time and place.

Think about the time and the place you tell your children about the divorce. Avoid holidays or special occasions, such as your child’s birthday, when you break the news. The memory of finding out will stick with your child forever. Make sure you give yourself ample time for the discussion. Do not schedule it before school or other activities that may cut the talk short. Avoid telling your children if you are not absolutely sure you are divorcing

2. Keep a united front.

Both parents should be present. The message should be clear and simple. Explain the situation but do not speak about details that could make your children believe they need to fix the problem or are the cause of the divorce. This is the time to set all anger aside and reassure your children although their lives are changing, both parents love them.

3. All family members should be present.

You may want to speak to your children separately, but research shows addressing your children all at once is best. This precludes a situation in which one child is forced to bear the burden of the secret or a child feels left out of a very important conversation. This is the time to tell all the children although you and your spouse will no longer be together, you will always be their parents.

4. Have a plan.

This is not the time to ad-lib. Children will often wonder what comes next, and you want to demonstrate you are taking this seriously. Together, prepare some key points in advance of the meeting. At the meeting, take turns going through each point. For example, if one parent is moving out, plan how and when that move will occur before the discussion. During the talk, you don’t have to share all the details of the move. You can let the children know they will soon have two homes and that you have worked out a schedule to make sure they are getting to school, extracurricular activities and work.

5. Make no assumptions.

Do not assume you know how your children will react. Each child is different and has his or her own way of coping. Keep in mind this conversation will be the first of many. Your children will need time to process the information. You will want to assure the children you are available to answer questions and will be as honest as possible with them.Do not be afraid to ask for professional help before and after talking to your children. Most importantly, keep your children’s best interests at heart. It can be easy to get caught up in the divorce process and in your anger. Be mindful of the impact this will have on your children

If you would like more information, please contact Angelica Rolong Cormier or 512.456.3957.

Angelica Rolong Cormier is passionate about practicing family law and helping clients in difficult circumstances successfully transition into the next phase of their lives. Rolong advises on a wide range of family-law matters, including financial and children’s issues and complicated child-custody matters. She guides clients in establishing a solid financial footing and making sound decisions for their children’s future

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