How do you tell your child about divorce?

On Behalf of | Aug 1, 2020 | Divorce |

Colorado parents like you have a lot to handle after you decide on divorce. Even if it is overall a better and healthier option for your family, it will be difficult at the start. You may have a long, complex road to traverse. 

Of course, one of the key components of your split is your child. How will you handle custody and visitation? Who will handle child support? And how do you actually tell your kid about the divorce? 

Breaking news of divorce

Psychology Today takes a look at how divorce impacts kids. Unfortunately, there is no golden answer here. There is no perfect way to break divorce news to your kids without hurting them. In fact, there is no way to avoid hurting them period. By the nature of divorce itself, telling your kid about it may hurt them. What you can do is limit the damage as much as possible. 

First, take your child’s age, personality and maturity into consideration. You must alter your approach based on that. Get ideas from help guides or friends or family. But understand that all children are different. What worked for one parent may not work for you. 

Working with your co-parent

Next, present a unified front with your co-parent. Do not talk to your kid after you have had an argument. Talk to them together, not separately. Do a rehearsal of the talk before you have it. Decide in advance what is and is not off limits for explanation. 

And when it comes to the explanation, know what to say. Your kid does not need all the details of your divorce. But giving them information about what to expect in the aftermath can help. It removes some of the element of surprise, which can help them cope better.