Breaking the news to your children that you and your spouse are getting divorced can be truly difficult, especially if the news is not something they are expecting.
There’s no right or wrong way to have this conversation and it’s not easy to know exactly what to say. There are, however, some ways you can make the conversation easier on both you and your teenage children.
Expect that they may be angry and upset
Being a teenager can be tough. Growing up and trying to find their place in the world isn’t a straightforward journey. Learning that their parents are getting divorced can leave your teenage child feeling angry and confused about how this is going to affect their life, which is already a pretty complicated reality. They may look to side with one parent and place blame on one or both of you for the decision in order to better make sense of their circumstances.
It’s important to understand that, while this is a life-changing decision for you, it’s just as big for them too. Their feelings are valid and the best thing you can do is listen to what they have to say and respond with reassurance.
Have the conversation together if possible
While you may not want to spend any time with your spouse, having the conversation with your children all together can help them to understand what’s happening. You can answer their questions and also show them that although your family dynamic is changing, you still love them and that’s not going to change.
When you make the decision to get divorced, it’s often the result of much consideration. It’s an emotionally difficult process and you need support to help the legal aspects of your situation progress as smoothly as possible. Don’t hesitate to seek legal guidance sooner rather than later.