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Helping your children understand an amicable divorce

On Behalf of | Jun 15, 2017 | Divorce |

The last thing you and your spouse wanted was a bitter divorce. It was important to both of you to keep rancor out of the process for the sake of your children especially. But to your consternation, the kids are bewildered by the breakup. It does not make sense to them.

Because the kids are not taking the divorce the way you assumed they would, you are facing issues you did not expect, but there are positive steps you can take to resolve those issues.

Be reassuring

The first thing they will probably think of is that the divorce is somehow their fault. They must have done something to drive the two of you apart. You will have to reassure them that this is not the case, that they should in no way blame themselves — and you will have to do this often.

Stress permanence

The children were so used to you getting along well, and they find it very difficult to believe that you no longer love each other. They will fantasize about your getting back together, so it should come as no surprise if they try to engineer situations where you two could meet and talk. The job you have here is to make them understand that the divorce is permanent, and again, you will have to do this often.

Think about the long term

Keep in mind that the relationship you have with your children and the other parent is one that will continue on. One of the reasons many people want an amicable divorce is so they can be civil toward each other in the years to come and interact in a reasonable fashion when they are around mutual friends, family and their children. The old saying “Begin as you mean to go on” is good advice here. Help your children come to grips with your amicable divorce and life going forward will be easier for everyone.