How To Help Children Process A Divorce
Navigating a divorce is difficult for spouses, but when minor children are involved, they must also process this significant change in their life. There are steps that parents can take to help a child prepare emotionally for a divorce, and the Law Offices of David L. Hirschberg are here to help with every step of the divorce process. To learn more about the wide range of legal services offered to our clients in the Boca Raton area, call or contact our office today.
Wait Until the Process has Started
The first step in preparing a child for divorce is waiting for the right moment to have the conversation. The best time to talk to a child is after the process has already started, and not before. Many couples consider divorce and ultimately change their mind. It can be incredibly difficult for a child to process that their parents are divorcing only to have them turn around and call it off.
Practice What You Will Say
The next step is practicing what will be said before talking to a child. This includes conferring with the spouse, even if the couple is not on the best of terms. Both parents must be on the same page and have the same answers to questions that a child might ask during this conversation. This could include everything from where the child will spend their time to where the family pet will live, so it is important that a parent is prepared before they have this talk. If you and the other parent are struggling with how to approach the topic with the child(ren), or you cannot reach an consensus with the other parent, suggest to that parent that the two of you have a joint session with a therapist/parenting coach to provide guidance.
Reassure and Support
It is critical to remain reassuring and supportive during and after this conversation with a child. Be sure to let them know that the decision to divorce is not their fault and that the parents will continue to love and support them even though the family will no longer live together as a cohesive group. Let the child know that all their feelings are valid, and that the parents are available to talk about this issue whenever they are.
Prepare for Delayed Responses
Finally, prepare for delayed responses from the child about this news. While it is natural for a child to have an immediate reaction to the news of their parents’ divorce, in many cases a child needs time to emotionally process this information. As a result, children may have outbursts, questions, or other reactions in the days and weeks after this conversation that a parent should be prepared for. If a child is really struggling after the news of a divorce, parents should also consider utilizing a child psychologist to help process their emotions during this significant change in their life.
Call or Contact Our Office Now
Do you have questions about filing for divorce? If so, the experienced Boca Raton divorce attorneys at the Law Offices of David L. Hirschberg are here to help. Call the office or contact us today to schedule a free consultation of your case now.