How To Prepare Your Child For Divorce
Navigating a divorce is difficult on spouses, but this significant life change can also be extremely difficult for any children involved, as well. Preparing a child for divorce can go a long way in helping them adjust to their new living situation as well as minimize issues during and after the divorce. For help and advice with the divorce process in the Tampa Bay area, call the office or contact Blair H. Chan, III today to schedule a consultation of your case.
Wait Until the Process has Begun
The first tip for preparing a child for divorce is to wait to tell them until after the process has started. One common mistake is informing a child well in advance of submitting a petition for divorce, as sometimes divorces are called off. It can be incredibly difficult for a child to process the fact that their parents are getting a divorce only to have them turn around and take it back. Avoid speaking to a child about divorce until the process has begun and the parents are sure that this is the choice they are making.
Practice Before You Tell Them
Another tip for preparing a child for divorce is to practice what you are going to say before you speak with them. Even if spouses are not on the best terms, they should still discuss and agree on what will be said to their child, and how. Make sure it is clear that this is not the child’s fault and have as many questions answered as possible, including where the child will live, where family pets will live, how much time they will spend with each parent, and anything else specific to the family that the child may ask.
Be Prepared for Delayed Reactions
Be prepared for delayed reactions from the child after they are told about a divorce. Children often have immediate reactions upon being told that their parents are no longer living together, but sometimes it takes longer for a child to fully process the information. It is important to be supportive of their feelings, even if the parent does not agree. A child may have an outburst or a delayed reaction, which is completely normal when handling this type of news.
Consider Utilizing a Therapist
Finally, if a child is struggling after the news of their parents’ divorce, consider the use of a therapist or psychologist to help the child through this difficult time. Sometimes, a child needs to speak with someone who is not as close to the situations as the parents navigating a divorce, and a trained professional can provide a safe space for the child to share their feelings.
Let Us Help You Today
Do you have more questions about how to prepare a child for divorce or wish to learn more about your legal options for filing for divorce? If so, the compassionate and knowledgeable Tampa divorce attorneys at the law office of Blair H. Chan, III are here to help. Call the office or contact us today to schedule an evaluation of your case now.