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Lawrenceburg Family Law Blog

How to tell your children about your pending divorce

Telling your children about your pending divorce is a challenging conversation that can drum up a variety of emotions. Even if your children are old enough to understand that things aren't right between you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse, it's still difficult to carry out this discussion.

Here are some steps you can take to ease the tension and comfort your children when telling them about your divorce:

  • Do it together: It's not always possible, but you should consider the benefits of telling your children about your divorce alongside your spouse. This alone will give your children peace of mind, as they see you getting along and working together to provide them with stability.
  • Have a plan: Telling your children about your divorce isn't as simple as blurting it out and seeing how they react. Plan out the conversation, such as by knowing how you'll lead into the discussion, what you want to say and how you'll deal with your children's reactions.
  • Expect the worst: Some children will cry. Some will ask questions. Others will act like it doesn't bother them. When you expect the worst, you can plan for every possible scenario.
  • Answer questions: Regardless of their age, your children will have questions about your divorce. Will I go to a new school? Will we live in the same house? Will this change how much time I spend with you? These are the types of questions your children will have. And in many cases, the questions will continue to come at you well into the future.
  • Continue to check in: Don't assume that one conversation is all it will take to give your children peace of mind regarding your divorce. Continue to check in regularly, asking them how they are feeling and if they have any questions. This alone can go a long way in easing the tension and allowing them to slowly adjust to their new life.

Strategies for successful co-parenting

If you and your spouse are planning to divorce and have children, you can expect a new dynamic to develop between you, your ex and your kids. You will now have to deal with various custody issues such as who is picking up the kids after school, trading holidays and scheduling recreational activities and vacations. When you are in a co-parenting situation, it is important to keep your kids as the focus and put aside differences with your ex.

Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to make co-parenting a successful venture. Here are some tips to help with the challenges of co-parenting.

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