Divorce is unpleasant and can really take out a lot from one. Children are the actual casualties of divorces. The innocent kids also have to endure the pain of a divorce. The stress that kids undergo during this time is felt for a long time afterward. Children go through all the stages of grief and if this goes unchecked, the child can get stuck on one of the emotions ad this can have adverse effects on their studies, and general life even way into adulthood. What then can a parent do to help their child deal with divorce if the decision to have is final?
The first thing you must do is to listen. Letting your child know that they are being heard all through makes them feel significant despite the divorce. Ensure you have maintained a healthy relationship with your kids and they will keep you posted on their feelings along the way which you can work out together.
The other thing that you need to do is break the news yourself to your child. Both parents need to be there for this. Discuss the discussion between the two of you before taking it to your child as this will ensure all feelings of hurt, anger, and blame are kept out of the discussion. Find out what is co-parenting and all that it entails not excluding the child support guidelines. Answer the questions smartly and help your child understand what is happening.
Kids will have to react but not all at the same time and you should acknowledge this. It goes without saying that the kids will react but it is important to help them through it all. Tell them that you care about how they feel and it is okay that it is okay for them to be upset. Not all kids will react as soon as the divorce is finalized but they might hold to their feelings a little bit longer. Some of them are afraid to feel sad and don’t know how to handle all the feelings or they just want to please you. Give them assurance that whenever they are ready to share what they feel, you will hear them out.
After the initial reaction, you should help them cope with reality. It is normal for them to hope that things would go differently and their parents would be back together in no time. They miss the kind of family they were used to and hoped for. Let them know that you understand what they want but don’t encourage them and give any false promises. It is important that you tell the truth of the matter but help them cope with it.