Helping your children adapt to life after divorce

Going through a divorce can be a challenging experience for you and your children. It can be challenging for adults and children alike to recognize that the divorce is not their fault so they can move forward from the experience.

While you are processing your divorce, you also need to help your children understand what happened and how they can find a new sense of normal as you build a new life.

Here are a few tips for supporting your children as they learn to cope with your recent divorce.

Be open to questions

Some children are very curious about the reasons for a divorce and what will happen in the future. In contrast, others are more willing to accept their new circumstances. Regardless of how many questions your children have (or do not have), it is essential that they feel comfortable asking them.

There may be times when your children ask questions that are not age-appropriate. When your children come to you with these questions, try to answer them in a matter-of-fact and age-appropriate way.

Your children do not need the details of why the marriage did not work out. Still, an age-appropriate response can help them process the change and let them know you will address all of their questions.

Talking is not always necessary

Everyone processes their emotions differently, so if your child is not talking about how they feel, they may be processing on their own. However, you should check in with your children from time to time to ensure they are learning how to cope with their new life.

Rather than pushing your children to talk, you can let your children know you are available as a resource for them. Consider offering them alternatives like playtime together, so they have time with you without the pressure to have a specific conversation.

As you and your children navigate through divorce, keep in mind that it may take time to figure out how to process the emotions and changes that come with divorce. It is important to be patient with yourself and your children as you navigate a challenging time.