What to say when your kids ask “Why are you getting divorced?”

One of the most difficult conversations parents can have with their children is explaining the decision to get a divorce. It’s natural for kids to ask Why? and expect a clear and honest answer. As a parent, it’s essential to approach this conversation with empathy, honesty, and reassurance. Here are some strategies and example sentences to help you find the right words to say.

Validate their feelings
Acknowledge your child’s emotions and let them know that it’s okay to feel sad, angry, or confused. This helps them feel heard and understood.

I know you’re feeling sad and scared about Mom and Dad getting a divorce. It’s a big change, and it’s okay to feel that way.

I can see why you’d be upset about this. It’s a lot to take in, but we’re here to support each other.

Be honest, but age-appropriate
Be truthful about the reasons for the divorce, but tailor your explanation to your child’s age and maturity level. Avoid blaming or criticizing the other parent.

Mom and Dad grew apart, and we can’t live together anymore. We both love you very much, but we can’t be married anymore.

Sometimes, even when people love each other, they can’t agree on things, and it’s better for everyone if they live in different houses.

Reassure them of your love
Let your child know that the divorce is not their fault and that you both love them just as much as before. This helps alleviate feelings of guilt or responsibility.

This has nothing to do with you, kiddo. You’re an amazing kid, and Mom and Dad love you more than anything. We’re just not happy together anymore.

We love you so much, and that will never change, no matter where we live or what happens with the divorce.

Explain the logistics
Provide some information about what will change and what will stay the same. This can help your child feel more secure and prepared.

We’ll still have family time together, just not all under the same roof. You’ll still see both Mom and Dad, and we’ll work together to make sure you’re taken care of.

You’ll still live with Mom/Dad most of the time, and the other parent will have visitation rights. We’ll make sure you have everything you need.

Listen and be patient
Remember that your child may have follow-up questions or concerns. Be patient, listen actively, and answer their questions honestly.

What’s bothering you most about the divorce? Is there something specific you’re worried about?

That’s a really good question! Let me think about that for a second…

Remind them of their own strengths
Help your child recognize their own resilience and ability to cope with challenging situations.

You’re so strong and capable. You’ve handled tough situations before, and you can do it again.

I know this is a lot to deal with, but you’re an amazing kid. You’ll get through this, and we’ll be here to support you.

Remember, every family is unique, and there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to discussing divorce with your kids. Be patient, flexible, and honest, and you’ll be well on your way to helping your child navigate this challenging time.

In conclusion, having the divorce conversation with your kids is undoubtedly difficult, but with empathy, honesty, and reassurance, you can help them feel more secure and supported. By being open and understanding, you can foster a stronger, more resilient relationship with your child, even in the face of divorce.

Be kind ❤

Related Posts