There’s no question divorce carries a heavy psychological burden. You are in mourning for the death of your marriage, and that’s natural, no matter your current feelings towards your spouse. Allow yourself to grieve. Don’t hide your feelings or pretend you’re just fine when your inner world is collapsing. Talk to trusted family and friends, and let them know how you are feeling. If necessary, speak with your clergy or schedule an appointment with a therapist.
How to Tell Your Children
Depending on your children’s ages and the circumstances of your marriage, they may suspect you are divorcing. Even if the news doesn’t come as a complete surprise, it’s still a difficult situation for your kids.
While you should tell your children the truth, do not place blame on one parent or air ugly facts. “We don’t get along anymore” is an acceptable, and accurate, statement.
Transitioning Your Children
Both parents – together – should discuss the divorce with the children. Let them know they are still loved and cherished by both of you, even though if you are no longer married. Children of divorce tend to fear abandonment or worry that they are not good enough to be loved. That outcome does not have to happen if neither parent abandons them and if both show their love deeply and genuinely.
Anticipate their questions and reactions, and have a plan prepared. This is a scary time for them, so assure them that although their lives will be different, they are still part of a family. Here are things to consider:
Once the news has settled in, help your children put the best light on the situation. If there are any positive aspects, point them out. Perhaps they can get a new pet – maybe a dog at one house and a cat at the other. They can have two of their favorite toys, one at each house. The goal is to help them ease into the change as easily as possible given the circumstances.
Atlanta Divorce Law Group