Should you tell your child about the divorce right now?

As parents who have decided on divorce, you likely have a lot of questions about your child, next. The number one question on most parents’ minds: how do you break the news of divorce to your child in the first place?

Many people have plenty of things to say about this topic, but some advice continues to come up over and over again.

Why do parents wait?

As Psychology Today states, there is no real right way to approach divorce. However, experts largely agree on at least a couple of factors. First of all, they agree that you should tell your child sooner rather than later. Waiting often does nothing but put them into a situation where they do not have enough time to process the changes coming up.

Many parents feel this is counterintuitive as they want to give their child as much time to enjoy a “normal life” as possible. However, this normal life ends the moment you decide to divorce. Dragging out the process of telling them only leaves them unprepared for the future, giving them a less sturdy foundation to build their coping mechanisms on.

Tailor your approach

Second, take the advice you get and tailor it to suit your child. Each child has a unique maturity level, personality and adaptability. This means they will all react differently to the news of divorce, no matter how you present it.

If you stay flexible with your planning and talk to your co-parent about how you want the talk to go before you start, you can ensure the possibility of a smoother discussion on a whole.

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Have more questions about divorce? Check out our Divorce Q&A.