Divorce tends to be a defining moment in a child’s life, and it can have major repercussions for the rest of their child and adulthood. As much as parents want to protect their children and allow them to have a normal life, divorces are never easy. Your children will have to be prepared for some lifestyle changes, and they might have trouble accepting this reality. However, making sure that they are well prepared will help cushion the blow, and prevent them from feeling like the world is crashing down on them. Here are a few ways that you can prepare your children for divorce.
Prepare them for Downsizing
Getting a divorce is usually an expensive affair. In states like Florida, getting a divorce can cost around $13,000 on average. Not only that, but it has been shown that net worth and net income have a tendency to go down after a divorce as well.
According to divorce lawyer Melanie Demps, children tend to be the most affected by this situation. It was estimated the average family income will drop by 42% after a divorce. While this might be difficult to accept for parents, this can be even more difficult for a child who feels like the decision is totally out of their control. So, you have to explain to them how their life will be changing from now on and readjust your habits today, so they won’t have such a shock if you do decide to move out and downsize.
Only Tell Them When Procedures have Started
This might seem counterintuitive, but you don’t want to let your children know too early that you’re getting a divorce. People change divorce plans all the time, and your children knowing that trouble is brewing could affect them even if you don’t end up getting a divorce. So, make sure that the wheels are actually in motion first before you make any announcements.
Let them Know that they Don’t Have to Choose Sides
The worst thing you could do to a child is making them feel like they have to choose their “favorite” parent or start antagonizing them. At the end of the day, children are better off when they have a healthy relationship with both parents. So, make sure that your past issues don’t interfere with your children having a full life.
Hold Regular Family Meetings
You also have to make sure that you keep your children updated on the situation and have multiple meetings about it. You want to let them know when things are close to being finalized, so they can prepare mentally. You also want to give them an opportunity to express themselves. This will keep the family bond alive and help you determine how you should be moving forward from now on.
Divorce can be a very difficult time for all parties involved. However, there are things that you can do to make sure that the process goes as smoothly as possible both for you and the innocent bystanders.