When they have decided to divorce, how parents give their children the news of the divorce is a very important thing. What parents say when delivering the news and how they say it can play a big role in setting a child's expectations regarding the divorce and the changes that will come about because of it. So, it can set the tone for how able the kids will be able to cope with divorce-related changes in the future.
One thing parents may want to do when it comes to delivering this news is, if possible, deliver the news to the kids together. Among the helpful things delivering the news together can have the potential to do are:
- Help ensure the message the kids are getting about the divorce is consistent. Parents giving differing messages about the divorce to the kids could increase the confusion the children are experiencing in relation to the divorce.
- Help the kids with understanding the news.
- Present a unified front for the kids when it comes to parenting.
This is just one example of a situation in which parental cooperation can play an important role in helping the kids with dealing with a divorce. There are all kinds of situations in which divorcing parents may have to work together in order to promote their kids' well-being. So, what kind of working relationship parents have with each other in the wake of a divorce is no small thing.
So, when divorcing, one thing parents may want to keep in mind is that how they act during and in relation to divorce matters, including matters regarding the kids (like child custody), could have the potential to affect their future working relationship with their ex.
Source: WFLA, “Helping Kids Understand Divorce,” Angela Ardolino, March 30, 2016