Divorce doesn’t only impact the couple that is breaking up. If they have children, those children can be severely affected too. Their entire lifestyle is about to change and there isn’t anything they can do about it. If you’re getting a divorce, you want to make sure that your child is prepared for this change as much as possible. Here are some tips to help you.
Assure Them They Are Loved
Divorce can be ugly and emotional. Even the most cordial divorce is still difficult. If your child is witnessing this, they might feel like they are to blame. They may also think that because their parents don’t love each other anymore, they don’t love the child either. You need to assure your child that they are loved. Even if their parents don’t love each other anymore, your child needs to know that their relationship hasn’t changed. This will help them emotionally as they go through the process of changing their lifestyle.
Explain What’s Going to Happen
Kids feel more secure when they know what’s coming next. During a divorce, there are a lot of changes that will impact your child. Do your best to tell them what is going to happen. This includes both divorce-related events and other changes to their usual schedule. For instance, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Dental Association recommends that children have their first dental appointment either when their first tooth comes in or before their first birthday. If your child has a dental appointment coming up, make sure they know both that the appointment is happening and which parent will bring them. If you keep them up to speed, they’ll feel a lot better.
Get them Involved In Life Changes
While you don’t want your child involved in the divorce itself, involving them in some of the changes that are coming to your lifestyle can help them feel more connected to you and the rest of their family. For instance, you might be moving to a new home. Let them decorate their new bedroom and be involved in settling into the new space. This will help them feel more of a sense of control in a situation where they really don’t have much control. As you buy a new house, consider their needs as well as yours. HomeLight states that houses that are FSBO sell for roughly 6% less than homes sold by realtors. This is something to consider as you look for your new post-divorce home.
Keep Their Routine
You want to keep your child’s life as normal as possible as you go through your divorce. The divorce is going to take up a lot of your time and energy. There are legal things you need to consider. For instance, residency laws. In Kansas, the residency requirement for filing for divorce in the state is sixty days. You also need to focus on the negotiations that are happening in every aspect of your life. Meanwhile, you want your kid to stay in their usual lifestyle as much as possible. This will help them feel more confident as the process begins and throughout your divorce.
Answer Their Questions
Your child is going to have a lot of questions. Answer them as honestly as possible. Keep things age-appropriate, but give them the information they need. They are going to be scared, but you can help them reduce that stress and anxiety by being honest and open.
When you’re going through a divorce, you need to make sure that your children are prepared for both the process and what happens after. Use these tips to make your child more comfortable and confident during your divorce.