One of the most difficult conversations you will ever have is discussing your plans to divorce your spouse with your children. As soon as you have decided to divorce, your children should be the first to know because you would not want them to hear it from someone else. That could be very upsetting to them and could potentially hurt your parent-child relationship.
Your children will remember this talk
Children will remember this talk, so make sure that you are prepared. Make this conversation a priority and focus on what you want to say. An outline of everything you want to share with them would be helpful. If you can, think of questions that you think they will ask so you can be prepared to answer them. Make sure they know that you are divorcing your spouse. You are not divorcing your children.
The ideal situation involves parents sitting with their children and telling them together. This will inevitably be difficult, but it is the most beneficial approach for the children if the parents can work as a team for these purposes. You already know you are getting a divorce. It does not hurt to set that aside for a moment for the sake of your children and join heads to make it easier for them.
Telling your kids why this is happening
Your children will most likely ask why you are getting a divorce if you don’t tell them first. Depending on the child’s age and maturity level, you can consider sharing more or less information. You do not have to get into specifics, especially if the reasons for your divorce include topics like infidelity or abuse, unless they know, bring it up and want to discuss it. In these complicated cases, consider counseling.
You can say something as simple as, “We never thought we would reach this point. However, after trying everything, we can no longer be together as partners, even though we are your parents and will continue to be your parents.”
Parents must try their best to make the conversation peaceful and non-blaming. After all, this is for the benefit of your child. If necessary, you will have plenty of time to argue with your soon-to-be former spouse.