How to Help Your Child Adjust to a Divorce

By Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

orange county divorce mediators; California Divorce MediatorsA divorce can be a highly traumatizing and overwhelming situation for a child. Although a divorce is a stressful time for the partners getting separated, it is actually the children involved who suffer the deepest impact of a broken family. Given their tender age and still developing cognition, it is very perplexing for a child to understand the complexities of a divorce and visualize it for what is really is. Many a time, the children end up bashing themselves as a reason for the family to fall apart. As adults, it is our responsibly to support our children in these testing times and make them understand that a divorce is not the end of the world. Let us have a look at a few guidelines that will help your child adjust to the transition from a happy family to a family with a single parent.

Tell the truth

It is very important for your child to understand the situation in a mature and practical way. However, you must try to spare your child a comprehensive explanation of the intricacies of why your marriage didn’t work out. You can put it in a simple and straightforward manner by saying that ‘Mommy and Daddy are unhappy with the everyday fighting and do not wish to upset everyone anymore’ so that your child actually understands what you are trying to say.

Reassure your child

The most horrifying aspect of a divorce for a child is his insecurity of losing out on the love of their parents. As aforementioned, in most cases, the children end up blaming themselves for the situation. However, we as adults know how untrue this is. It is important to reassure your child that it is not their fault that your marriage didn’t work out and that both their father and mother will love them, regardless of the separation. Your child needs to know that although everything around them is changing drastically, the one thing that will stay constant is your compassion for them.

Ensure their routine

Most children thrive on the routine they have been following ever since they developed a sense of how things work in everyday life. Kids tend to feel more secure when they are aware of what to expect next. You can keep your child calm and help them adapt to the new life by sticking to their daily routine and giving them their regular playtime and nap time even in the new home.

And last but not the least, allowing your child to express their feeling openly in front of you, will help them deal with the pent up emotions that might otherwise be detrimental to their mental well-being.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation