It can be difficult for children to adjust to divorce, but there are steps every parent can take to reduce the stress and anxiety that a divorce can cause. Your children may vary in age, but despite that, you can always make it a priority to help them understand and cope with this new situation.
A life with both parents may be all your children know, so this change is massive in their lives. How can you help? Look into reducing conflict, helping them understand divorce and providing additional support as they adjust.
The first step is to reduce conflict in your home. If you and your spouse still live together, stop arguing or having conflicts in front of your children. Wait until they’re at school to discuss divorce matters or focus on doing so when you are both able to be calm and respectful with one another.
Help your children understand divorce
At most ages, children can understand some concepts of divorce. A 3- or 4-year-old child may understand that mom and dad are living apart, for example, while a teen can easily understand that relationships don’t always work out as intended. Approach the topic in an age-appropriate way, so you can explain what will happen during and after the divorce.
Provide love and compassion
Finally, remember that your children need support while reducing conflict, just like you do. They may have nothing to compare this to, so they may feel it’s the end of everything they’ve ever known. Be there, be supportive and offer to talk to them, so they can feel heard and understood throughout the process.
With these tips, you can make it easier for your child to adjust to divorce.