Dealing with a separation is difficult, but telling your kids about the divorce is even harder, even when they are already teenagers. Although it might seem easier to tell teenagers as they are more mature than younger kids, it is still going to be very challenging. As much as possible, you don’t want to involve your children in the conflict. They will be affected by the separation but you can avoid making it worse for them.
If you want to know how to tell your teenager that you are getting a divorce, you are on the right page. The effects of divorce on teenage sons and daughters may be different depending on the situation, but you can expect mood changes, strong emotions and a lot of questions from your teens. You are probably already thinking about how to accept separation and handle it, and now you have to deal with telling your kids about it. Here are some tips that you can try.
Tips on how to tell your teenager you are separating:
- Make sure the timing is good.
While it is very easy to just blurt out, “We’re getting a divorce,” timing is important. It will be better if both you and your partner are present when you tell them the news so that you can show a united front. Your teen will know that it’s a mutual decision. In addition, you wouldn’t want to tell them about your separation when they are feeling tired or stressed. And make sure that there will be time for you to answer your children’s questions and discuss some other issues.
- Be honest. At the same time, you don’t need to give all the details.
There is no other way to deal with this but to be open and honest about the separation. But don’t give all the ugly details. As much as possible, you don’t want your teen to blame you or your partner. Giving them all the details might make things more complicated than it already is.
They would also want to know what happens when their parents separate. Talk to them about your future plans. Tell them about any arrangement that you and your partner have come up with. They would have a lot of questions so be open to answering them.
- Take responsibility for your actions and decisions.
If your teen asks if they had something to do with the separation, assure them that it’s not their fault. They may also want to know if they can fix things. Tell them honestly that there’s nothing they could do to change the situation. But reassure them that they will always be your and your partner’s priority.
Also, don’t put the blame on your partner. It might make them hate one of their parents, which is something that you’d want to avoid. Tell them that it was both your decision to separate.
- Assure your son/daughter that you and your spouse will love and support them no matter what.
The most important thing about telling your children about the separation is to give them an assurance that no matter what happens, you and your partner will be there for them. Talk to them about co-parenting. Assure them that they will always be loved. You and your partner may be separating but it doesn’t mean that your roles as parents would change. You have to let your teens know that they can always rely and count on you even though their mother and father would be living apart.
Now that you know how to tell your teenager you are separating, you must also know the best way to handle a marriage separation. Albeit difficult, an amicable divorce is possible. You and your husband should communicate with each other and find ways to make the separation as peaceful as possible not only for the two of you but most especially for your children.