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Telling kids you are divorcing in California

Learn a few tips to keep in mind to break the news to your kids that you and their other parent are getting a divorce.

Divorcing parents have one more thing to add to their list whilst planning their new separate lives: telling kids their parents are splitting up. If you are in this situation and feel unsure of how your children will react or the best way to tell them about your divorce, a little advice and turning to a California legal professional can help.

Work with the other parent

Your kids are likely used to seeing you and the other parent as a single unit. That means it is best you and the other parent sit down with your kids and break the news together. If you and your soon-to-be-ex are not on good terms right now, it is best you put your emotions aside and focus on what is best for your kids and their mental state. Remember, this revelation is more about your children than it is about you and the other parent.

Explain the divorce in terms your kids can understand

How old your kids are will determine the words and phrases you use to explain to them what divorce is and why you and the other parent are getting one. You know how your son or daughter thinks, processes information and reacts to certain stimuli. Keep this information in mind as you decide on the best way to frame the split, the reason for it and what happens after it. Under no circumstances should you take an “off the cuff” approach to this situation.

Expect a variety of emotions

While you may know your son or daughter well, kids can still surprise you. The minds of younger children are still developing, so their immediate reaction to the revelation may be one you do not expect. Older kids may become angry, irritable or moody.

Additionally, leave the door open for your kids to ask questions. Answer them as truthfully as you can, but recognize that there may be some details of the divorce your kids do not need to know.

Tell your kids you will still take care of them

If you have younger kids, they may worry no one will take care of them if their parents will no longer live together. Get ahead of this worry by explaining that while you and the other parent will not live together, the two of you will work together to take care of your children. By this time, you may or may not have your future living arrangements worked out, but make it plain that you will provide for and look after your kids, just as you did during your marriage.

Telling your kids their parents are getting a divorce in California can make your situation that much more frustrating. For more insight and expert advice, turn to a legal professional who has experience with such matters.