Skip to Content

How to Help Your Children Cope Up with Divorce

It is important that you support your kids get through divorce by helping them express their emotions.

It is not good if you let your children tend to their emotions on their own.

This post will discuss tips on how you can help your children cope up with divorce.

How to Help Your Children Express Their Feelings

You need to learn how to listen to your kids without you getting defensive in the process. Once you listen to your kids, your next task is to reassure them that their feelings are normal and that you are there to give them your unconditional love.

This section will discuss the things that you need to know about how to help your children express their feelings and reassure your kids that everything will be all right during the divorce.

Divorce can feel like a huge loss to all kids. It is like losing a parent or the life that they are used to.

Children grieve at the thought of divorce but you can help them adjust to the new events that will come to their lives by supporting their feelings.

  • Find Words for Their Feelings
    Children find it difficult to express their feelings under the circumstance of divorce. You can help them by noticing their moods and telling them that what they are feeling are normal. Encourage them to express how they feel.

  • Listen
    When your child shares his or her feelings, listen to them. You will be surprised on how your child reacts to the divorce. Once you are done listening, reassure them by telling them that you love them.

  • Encourage Them to Be Honest
    Many children are very reluctant to share their true feelings because they are afraid of hurting you. Tell them that it is okay to be honest.

    The thing is that if they are not honest with their feelings, it will be harder to deal with your kids and this can also result to a lot of resentment in their part.

  • Acknowledge Their Feelings
    It may be difficult to fix the situation and do something about the sadness that they feel but it is important that you acknowledge their feelings instead of dismissing them.

How to Clear Up Any Misunderstandings

Most kids believe that they are the reasons why you are getting divorced. It is important that you let your kids understand the situation otherwise it will result to a lot of confusion during the process.

You can help your children let go of the misconceptions about your divorce by doing the following:

  • Be Patient
    Children especially minors will never be able to get a grasp of the situation within a day. The child may undergo the five stages of sadness so instead of leaving your children alone, be patient and wait for them to accept the situation.

  • Set the Record Straight
    Always let them know why you decided to end up your marriage with divorce. It often pays to tell your kids the real reason why you are getting divorced.

    However, remember about age appropriateness and tell your kids the reasons in a manner that they will understand the situation.

  • Reassure Them
    You have to reassure them as often as you can so that they will feel that they are loved even if you are getting divorced. This will make children feel that they are not responsible why you are ending your marriage.

How to Give Them Reassurance

Children have very good abilities to heal if they are given the right support that they need.

Reassuring kids with words is not enough.

In fact, you need to show your kids the right words, actions and consistency if you want them to feel reassured of your unchanging love for them despite the divorce.

Below are the things that you need to do to show them your assurance.

  • Tell Them that It Will Be Okay
    It is important that you tell your kids that everything will be fine even if the marriage isn’t. Telling them that it will be alright gives them incentive so that they can accept the new event [divorce] a chance.

  • Be Present at All Times
    It is crucial for both parents to be physically present if the child needs them. Let them understand that even if they will be living separately, the family unit still remains the same and that the kids can still have a good relationship with both parents.

  • Maintain Closeness
    You have to reassure them as often as you can so that they will feel that they are loved even if you are getting divorced. This will make children feel that they are not responsible why you are ending your marriage.

  • Be Honest at All Times
    Children will always raise their concerns about the divorce. If you are not certain about the answer tell them truthfully that you don’t know but tell them that you will be by their side to face as they face their fears.

How to Provide Stability during Divorce

Children need to be flexible but letting them go through divorce is too much and it can break the very foundation of their principles and beliefs.

In this crucial time, it is important that you provide structure and stability in their daily lives so that they don’t lose themselves to anger, resentment and sadness.

Establishing stability does not necessarily mean setting up rigid schedule to your children but it means creating routines that will provide them a sense of calm during the divorce.

The advantage of setting up schedules for younger children is recognized as a good way for children to cope up with divorce.

However, it is important to take note that even older children need routine. The thing is that they feel safer when they know the things that they need to expect about divorce such as switching homes or changing schools.

Below are the things that you can do to set routines to your kids to provide stability during divorce.

  • Set a “FUN" Day Every Week
    It is important that you set a schedule for “fun” day that your kids will look forward to every week. This will allow them to relax their minds from thinking about the divorce.

  • Eat Meals Together
    Make it a habit of eating meals together. Set a specific time for meal times so that you and your children can talk about your day.

  • Enforce Family Rules
    One of the most crucial mistakes that parents make during divorce is that they spoil their kids by giving them gifts just to make up for everything. However, this only masks the problem.

    Instead, enforce the family rules to give your children the idea that the family unit is still the same even if you are splitting up.

Help Yourself

In reality, you cannot help your children cope up with the stress of divorce if you do not take care of yourself. Divorce can be a harrowing experience and if you don’t help yourself, you will end up asking your kids to take care of you.

As a parent, you need to serve your family and not the other way around. Below are the tips on how you can take care yourself even if the looming divorce is troubling you.

Your Steps to Recovery

You need to maintain a calm disposition so that your kids will also feel at ease with the entire situation.

So how do you take care of yourself during the divorce?

Below are the steps on how you can improve your well-being despite the divorce.

  • See Your Friends All the Time
    Most people hole up in their homes and refuse to see their family and friends because they are afraid of being asked about the divorce.

    The thing is that you need to be distracted during divorce so seeing friends and family is a great way to distract your mind from the problems.

  • Exercise & Live Healthy
    Exercise can help you relieve yourself from any pent-up frustrations and stress. So instead of binge-eating your favorite unhealthy snacks, exercising or cooking healthy means will help you recover your strength.

  • Write on a Journal
    Whether you are angry, sad or happy, it is crucial that you write down your feelings and thoughts so that you can release your tension. Moreover, you can also look back on how far you have come if you write on a journal.

How to Get Support

Divorce is a complicated and highly stressful thing and people who go through it without seeking the right support are often devastated after handling the problem.

Below are the things that you need to know on how to get support so that you can recover.

  • Lean on Friends & Family
    Make your friends and your family your support group so that you can handle sadness, anger, resentment and frustrations. Make sure that you tell them your emotions so that you do not take them out on your kids.

  • Seek a Therapist
    If the divorce is making you feel a lot of anger, grief, fear, shame or stress, then seeking out a professional can help you sort and work through your emotions. Do not be afraid to seek professional help.

  • Laugh
    Injecting humor in your life is very important because it can help you relieve yourself from stress thus giving you a break from all negativities.

    Even if you are going through divorce, it is important that you still learn how to laugh and teach your children to do the same thing.

  • DO NOT Feed Negativities to Your Children
    No matter what happens, do not use your children to talk out your problems. Remember that your children have nothing to do with the divorce.

How to Work With Your Ex for the Welfare of Your Children

Divorce always leads to both parents having conflict over the custody and welfare of kids. It is important that you do not put your children in the middle of the fight.

Your goal here is to make sure that you prevent your children from lasting stress and pain while going through divorce. Below are the tips on how you can save them from feeling all negativities while you are going through divorce:

  • Take the Argument Somewhere
    If there is a need for you to argue with your spouse, take the argument somewhere. If it is impossible to argue without the presence of your kids, drop the conversation and talk some other time.

  • Be Polite
    When interacting with your spouse, be polite as this not only sets a good example for your children but it can also make your ex have gracious response thus preventing any untoward arguments to happen.

  • Be Tactful
    Never tell your children about the details of your spouse’s behavior. Remember that if you do not have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything.

  • Developing a Friendly Relationship with Your Spouse
    It might be difficult but working to develop an amicable relationship with your ex-spouse can help your children transition smoothly in divorce.

    What’s best for your kids is for them to have a good relationship with both parents throughout their lives so even if you are dissolving your marriage; you still need to maintain communication with each for the sake of the children.

  • Have Long-term Goals
    Keep in mind that you need to keep long term goals to raise your children through divorce.

    The long-term goals will allow you to see to it that the needs of your children are provided and that you don’t become an irresponsible parent.

  • Think of Everyone’s Happiness
    Your goal is to think about the happiness not only of your children but also for yourself as well as your ex-spouse.

    Divorce indicates a fresh leaf in your life so expect that all of you will be getting new lives after a divorce.

    It is, therefore, crucial to think about everyone’s happiness in the end.