Janet L. Goehle, Attorney at Law
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Explaining divorce to children

For many parents who are going through a divorce in Minnesota, nothing seems harder than having to explain the situation to their kids. No matter how young or old they are, their children may not have a good understating of how mommy and daddy’s separation really affects them. According to HealthyChildren.org, it is important for parents to show their children that even though they will live in separate homes, both mom and dad will still be there for them.

Children tend to put the blame of the situation on their shoulders and may act out in an effort to get attention and keep their parents together. Both parents should inform their kids that the situation is not something that can be fixed by children. They should explain to their kids that their separation is what they have agreed to because it works best for them. They should also tell their children that the separation is not their fault.

Parents should work towards minimizing disruptions in their kids’ lives because change is often a frightening experience for them. They should also try to prepare their kids for any changes that must occur in regards to their new custody and living arrangements. Children need support during this trying time in their lives. Therefore, both parents should remain honest with their kids and keep them abreast of what is going on without providing them with inappropriate information.

Even though one parent may dislike their ex-spouse, it is still possible for them to love their kids and to want to do what is necessary to make the situation easier for them to bear, states The Huffington Post. Parents should always put their children first. When breaking the news to their children, parents should avoid doing so around certain times, such as when there are important school, social and life events in their lives. It is also a good idea to choose an area where their kids will not be surrounded or interacting with any friends, relatives and loved ones. A safe setting is ideal so that there will be no interruptions during this important discussion.

Divorce is not something many parents want to discuss with their kids. However, it is far better to explain the situation to them than it is to avoid it and risk reaping the irrevocable consequences that may follow.

 

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