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3 Positive Ways to Help Your Children Cope with Divorce

divorce lawyers financeDivorce is never easy for anyone, neither the parents the kids. Especially not the kids. It might be hard to cope with the feelings of guilt, loss and the resulting anxiety for years, decades even. Divorce can even scar some kids for life, affecting their own future relationships.

In order to prevent this, you as parents need to do your best to help your kids understand and cope with your divorce by explaining how they have no reason to feel ashamed or guilty, how a divorce is not uncommon or something to be scared about.

It might be hard to explain to your children that sometimes the only way to live your life is to sever relationships that are not going anywhere and that are causing your family a great amount of grief. A lot of children are witness to their parents fighting all the time, which can result in anxiety and other mental issues.

In this article, we are going to share some strategies on how to help your children cope with your divorce easier and prevent it from having a major impact on their life.

Avoid Fighting With Your Former Partner

It’s almost too easy to get caught in a feud with your former partner during the divorce. However, the parental conflict is one of the main causes of trauma for children, as they usually feel pressured to choose a side in the fight. Children in this situation tend to develop anxiety and often align with one parent over the other which leads to alienation from the other parent.

Make no mistake, if that happens to you it’s not the kid’s fault, it’s your own. Children often choose one over the other when they feel pressured or caught between the two warring sides. Forming a strong bond with the child may be difficult later on.

To prevent this from happening to you and your kid, make sure not to pressure your child or have them witness your fight, no matter how angry you are with your partner. If you need someone to bridge the gap between you to, agencies like Pacific Coast Mediation offer help in making the divorce as peaceful as possible.

Explain the Divorce

It’s important to sit down with your kids and using simple and straightforward terms explain what the divorce means. If possible, both parents should talk to the children in a calm manner and explain the situation to them. Feel free to explain that your divorce is a result of you fighting all the time. Reassure them that they will always have your unconditional love and explain how your relationship will work from now on.

If you’ve agreed on a schedule with your former partner, tell your kids when they will be spending time with each parent. You can use dolls and toys to explain how this will work to younger children. You can also help them make a calendar of the time they will be spending with each.

Encourage them to look forward to spending time with their other parent, and under no circumstance berate your former partner if they cannot spend time with your kids when you agreed.

Talk about their Feelings

You can imagine how something as terrifying as a divorce can affect a child. One of the most common emotions children develop is a feeling of guilt, believing themselves to be responsible for your falling out. As kids tend to believe everything revolves around them, they will likely find a way to blame your separation on themselves. You need to reassure them that you made the decision based on your own relationship and that they had nothing to do with it.

You might need to explain how it’s normal to feel angry or sad after your divorce. Children find these emotions difficult to cope with on their own, and they will definitely need your help in sorting their feelings out.

Even worse, some children tend to bury those emotions inside them and pretend that nothing happened and that they don’t feel affected. While for some this might be true, for others it’s more likely a lie. In this case, it’s important to help your children confront their feeling rather than burying them.

If you don’t think you can do this on your own, consider hiring a therapist or a parenting expert who has helped children through divorces many times before. They will be able to share valuable guidance and teach your children how to deal with the flood of emotions they’ll face. It’s also important for your kids to talk to them alone, as they will be more likely to speak about things they feel could hurt their parents.

Contact Pacific Coast Mediation at 11455 El Camino Real, San Diego, CA 92130, USA; 858-750-1634 or visit to learn more.

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