Children and Divorce: How To Answer Their Three BIG Questions

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Posted by: Sue Atkins

The first week back after Christmas is just one of the times when lots of couples decide to divorce.

The catalyst is spending so much time together over the festive season. It can either make or break a relationship.

On Friday 8th January I am launching a new series of free Divorce videos called Divorce Step by Step.

Divorce Step By Step has been set up specifically to help you address the range of issues and matters you have to face when going through a divorce. I have been through the process myself so I know 1st hand how you are feeling and what you are going to go through.

I have come out the other side, stronger and fitter in every sense of the word. It’s not easy but with the right help and guidance the Divorce Step By Step videos will help you to help yourself make it less of a minefield.

I think it’s really important that you remember that divorce is a process NOT an event.

No two divorce situations are identical, but I believe sharing your story will be extremely helpful to other people going through the same process. Simply email me your divorce story. All contributions will be edited to keep the identity of everyone anonymous and names will be replaced with initials and we won’t publish any anonymous contributions.

The website is not a place to vent your anger at your ex – it’s a place to get information, ideas & strategies and it’s my intention to empower you to make good decisions going forward.

 There are three areas in which the videos will seek to guide you.
1. Legal – we’ve recruited some of the top family lawyers to take you through the paperwork and process.
2. Financial – guidance on what you can expect to pay and what you might expect to get.
3. Emotional – the effect on the children and just as importantly YOU.
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Please feel free to ask questions and where relevant and appropriate our experts will offer their advice in response to your email.
I’m here to support you through my Divorce Videos,  Divorce Coaching Programmes, Divorce Workshops and with my inexpensive Divorce Resources

Do have a look at my series of Divorce Conversational Cards  that can be used to help you through the challenging & stressful time of divorce. They feature 48 questions to help you start the difficult conversations about the changes that your family is facing when they are going through a divorce.

These simple cards help you & your children explore, express & prepare for the changes & challenges ahead.

The range includes:

Talking To Children About Divorce

20 Questions Children Always Ask About Divorce

Divorce – The Legal Questions

Divorce – The Financial Questions – launching in March

Divorce – Co-Parenting Positively – launching next week.

Click -> Divorce Step by Step to watch the videos and join the conversation.

No 2 divorces are the same

 

Over the next few weeks I will be posting a daily divorce blog to support and help you.

You are NOT alone and I think it’s really important that you remember that divorce is a process NOT an event.

If you’d like to work personally with me call me on 01883 818329 or email me on Sue@TheSueAtkins.com

Children and Divorce: How To Answer Their Three BIG Questions

Children tend to ask the same kinds of tough, heart wrenching questions about divorce. The good news is that you don’t have to have all the answers. But it does help to prepare for those questions and be ready to listen and respond in a way that will help your kids feel loved.

When your children ask tough questions, they aren’t looking for complicated answers. Initially they are looking for affirmation, not information. This means they want to be assured that you love them no matter what. They want to know that you recognise and understand their turbulent and scary feelings.

Here are some tips on three of the most common questions.

 

  1. Why? From “why did you stop loving each other” to “why are you doing this,” children want to know the big-picture reason behind your break up. The fear behind this question is that if you, as Mum and Dad, can stop loving each other, perhaps you might both stop loving them too. So you’ll need to assure your child that love between parents is very different from a parent’s love for their child and of course both Mummy and Daddy love them and ALWAYS will. Your love for them is permanent and will never change. In most cases, it’s not appropriate to get into the details of why you’re divorcing. Instead, reassure your child that you are still a family, just a different kind of family.

 

  1. Is this my fault? Young children, especially, are self-centered, so they can’t help wondering if they are somehow at fault for your break up. Again, the most important thing here is to assure your child that your love for them is unconditional. They need to know your complicated relationship has nothing to do with them — they are NOT the cause of the divorce. They will always be loved. That will never change.

 

  1. Where will I live? Make sure you have agreed on a parenting plan — even a temporary one — before you break the news to your children. Tell them where they will be, when, and for how long. Let them know that they can express their feelings about these arrangements to you any time they need to. And always speak respectfully about your ex in your answers — don’t involve your children in whatever conflicts you’re having with your spouse. ( I know easier said than done, but do take the long term view and put your children’s best interest at the heart of all you do and say at this stressful time.)

What kinds of questions have your children been asking about your break up?

 

 

 

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