There is still plenty that you can do to make the process of divorce less painful for your kids. Here is how to help your child to cope with it
Divorce is a heart-wrenching affair and can be stressful not just for the couple but also their kids. From a child’s perspective, their world is torn into two and it traumatizes their entire childhood. There is a deep effect of divorce on children. The might be in a state of shock, depressed, sad, frustrated or angry. They might even lose faith in the institution of marriage or might go into their shell and curtail all social interactions. There is probably nothing you can do to change the situation or change how they feel but by following these simple steps will help them successfully navigate through this rough phase. There is still plenty that you can do to make the process less painful for your children.
Top 6 ways to make the process a little less stressful or painful for your kids:
1. Do not fight in front of your kids:
At the very prospect of their parents splitting, kids are extremely stressed and heartbroken. If they see their parents fighting that will only make the situation worse for them. Parents in open conflict set a bad example for their kids who are still learning to form their own relationships. Whether it is a mutual divorce or a contested divorce you must keep all verbal altercations, legal talks, heated discussions, visible conflict away from your kids. You can ask your divorce lawyer as to how to get mutual divorce so that there is least impact on your children and the legal proceedings takes place peacefully.
2. Breaking the news:
This is the most difficult part of divorce, informing the children that their parents will not be living together any more. While breaking the news both the parents should be present with the kids. Choose an appropriate time so there are no impediments while you disclose this news to your children. Whether it is divorce with mutual consent or without mutual consent ensure that you both give the same reasons and explanation while telling your kids about your separation. Otherwise it may leave your kids confused. Sometimes, inadvertently the kids blame themselves for breakage of their parents marriage. You must tell your kids that they are not the reason for ending your marriage. You must also tell your kids that with time adults change and the way they love can also change. Remember the kids need to know all the reasons for breaking of your marriage.
3. Handling kids reaction:
Once you are certain on the decision of divorce, break the news to your kids. There is no easy way to inform your children about this hard truth. The only thing you must do is to not get angry or upset while telling your kids. Your kids may ask a lot of questions at once. Don’t get anxious or angry at their question. Try to answer them as politely as you can. Children of divorce parents might get reticent and not express themselves. Encourage honesty and let your child express freely how they feel about the current situation. It’s alright for them to mourn over the loss of their family. Reassure your kids that you understand their feelings and try and do things that would make them feel better. Probably you cannot change their feeling from sadness to happiness but you must acknowledge their feelings instead of dismissing them right away. You cannot do anything to fix their problems but listening to them and giving room so that they can freely express themselves will be of a great help to them.
4. Parenting after divorce:
Right after your separation, the children are expected to adjust to a new environment. Assist them while they cope up with this new change. Your patience, reassurance and listening ear can minimize tension as your children learn to cope up with unfamiliar circumstances. Mutual divorce in India is not very common, after separating the couple might not be even willing to speak with each other but remember the child needs the love and care of both the parents. Both mother and father should actively take part in children’s daily routine.
6. Provide stability and structure:
Your kids may be anxious about their new life. Tell them that something is ending for sure but it is also the start of something new. Try and show them the positives of the situation and assure that all their interests will be taken care of with utmost care.
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