One of the most difficult things about divorce, when you and your ex-spouse have children together, is telling them that you are separating. Children, especially small ones, are never prepared to hear the news of their parents separating from each other and living in different houses. Some of them even develop personality disorders due to this very fact.
However, staying in a bad marriage for the sake of your children won’t be fair to you. Therefore, it is important to figure out the safest way to break the news to your children. An Ottawa Divorce Lawyer can help you learn a few tips and represent you in your divorce.
Tips for telling your children about your divorce
- Keep the communication clear and simple.
Children naturally have difficulty processing complicated messages. Therefore, you must clearly convey the news of your Ottawa divorce and why you are getting it in a simple language that they understand. Do not say things like, “Your father cheated” or “Your mother does not care about me anymore.” Saying things like this can turn them against the other parent.
Instead, try keeping the language simple. You could try saying the following sentences.
- Mommy and daddy are no longer happy together and want to get a divorce.
- Mommy and daddy are going to be much happier after this.
- You will be loved at two houses.
- Prepare in advance.
Breaking the news of your divorce is not the same as telling your child to do their homework. Difficult conversations like these need to be prepared for and practiced in advance, so you make no mistakes. Mistakes may include saying the wrong and inappropriate things in front of your child, which could possibly hurt them even more.
You should write down everything you are going to say to them and then get it approved by your ex-spouse to make sure they are okay with it. After all, they are your child’s parents, and you do not want your child to hate them.
- Tell them the truth.
If you have decided on a divorce and filed a petition in court, there is no point in lying to your child. If you tell your child that you are only going to be living in different places for a while instead of telling them that you are getting divorced, they will keep waiting for the day you move back with their other parent. There is nothing more painful for a child than getting their hopes crushed.
Breaking out the news will undoubtedly cause them to experience many emotions. They may be shocked, angry, sad, or all of them. Still, the longer you withhold the truth, the more unfair it is to your child.