Arizona parents who are divorcing know that one of the toughest parts of this process is the moment they have to break the news to their children. Many parents do not know where to begin when it comes to discussing an impending divorce with their kids.
One useful tip is to approach the children sooner rather than later in the process. They will appreciate your honesty and directness. Therefore, it is vital that parents are honest and truthful when answering all of the child's questions regarding the end of a marriage.
However, as emotions run high in any divorce, a parent must be very careful not to disparage the other spouse in front of the children. A parent should not share negative information about the other parent with the children. A judge could potentially reprimand a parent who disparages another parent in front of the kids and this behavior can even jeopardize custody privileges, visitation plans and parenting time. Additionally, the children should never have to be forced to choose between on parent or the other.
It is extremely important that divorcing parents always reassure their children that they did not cause the divorce in any way. While it is important that the children know that their parents can no longer live together amicably, it is not necessary to divulge the intimate details of why the marriage is ending.
Finally, many experts recommend providing the children with a counselor or a therapist who is a neutral party. This will allow them to freely express their feelings about the divorce without any fear of recrimination. In addition, counseling could help children deal with this difficult transition in their lives.
Source: Circle of Moms, "5 Tips for Talking to Your Kids About Divorce," Mary Beth Sammons, Aug. 3, 2012