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How to Help Your Children Through a Divorce

Divorce is never simple or easy. Maybe you wrestled with the decision for years before finally deciding to proceed with a divorce. Perhaps your former spouse made the decision for you. Maybe you and your partner chose to end things on amicable terms. No matter how your divorce came to be, it’s important that you take the time to work through your emotions and feelings regarding the separation. Then you’ll be able to help your children cope with their own emotions, as well.

Whether your children are infants or teenagers, they’re going to experience a variety of emotions regarding the separation. Their entire life will change when you get divorced, so it’s important that you help them deal with it as effectively as possible. No matter how old your children are, there are several steps you can take to help them face these new changes.

First off, make sure you avoid talking negatively about your former spouse. While it can be easy to point fingers and place blame during a divorce, try to remember that to your children, this is their beloved parent. Even if your partner has been terrible to you, try to avoid saying anything that would stress out your children or make them feel like they’re being placed in the middle of your divorce. If you can’t say anything positive about your former partner, simply avoid saying anything at all to your children.

Next, try to talk with your children as soon as possible about the divorce. Don’t simply spring the divorce on them. While you may naturally want to protect them and avoid talking about the divorce until you know for certain it’s going to happen, understand that your children may experience shock or sadness when you tell them about the separation. If you can give them some notice before you and your partner move to different houses, for example, it may help your children come to terms with the divorce. However, do not discuss the details of the divorce litigation with your children especially if it would put your spouse in a poor light.

Understand that your children may experience a wide range of emotions. They might feel angry or sad when they think about the divorce. They might feel nervous or even scared. After all, the divorce will bring many changes for them. They might move to a new house, have a new schedule, or even go to a new school. Don’t be afraid to let your children feel these emotions. Never tell them that what they’re feeling is wrong. Instead, talk with your children and encourage them to express themselves fully.

If you and your partner notice that your children are having a hard time coping with the divorce, you may want to consider attending family counseling together. Family therapy offers a safe, supportive space where your children can express themselves without fear. Having a neutral third party may also help your children to express themselves verbally.

Remember that no matter what the circumstances of your divorce might be, it’s possible to move through this experience and come out a better person. While you may feel stress, anxiety, or sadness during this time, try to focus on your children and your bright future together. This will help you through your journey and will help you and your children grow closer to one another. I if you have any questions about a New Jersey divorce, call the Law Offices Of Peter Van Aulen at (201) 845-7400 today for a free initial consultation.


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