Divorce is a stressful and emotional time for everyone involved. Children are especially susceptible in this time, because they don’t fully understand the details of what is happening around them. Divorce brings up any number of questions in a child’s mind about how their family is changing. It’s never easy to answer questions about divorce, but it can be even more difficult to read between the lines to know what your child is really worried about. Below we continue our series on how to answer some of these difficult questions.
Will I Still Go To My Same School?
Outside of family, a child’s friends are the most important part of their life. They provide comfort and stability. Going to a new school and making new friends can be daunting for anyone. But the added emotional toll can be really worrying in the wake of divorce. If you can maintain the same school, settle your child’s fears by letting them know that their friends will be there as an added comfort through the this. If a change is necessary, reassure your child that this will be a new adventure and you’ll support them through the new journey.
What If I Don’t Want You To Get A Divorce?
No one likes it when things change, and a sudden shift in family life is the most jarring change of all. Your child may hope that there is something they can do to fix it and stop the divorce from happening. Let your child know that this won’t be easy, but no matter what happens mom and dad will still love them. It is sad to go through divorce, no matter the circumstances, but together you can get through this.
Will Every Holiday/Birthday From Now On Be Sad?
Holidays and birthdays are a time for joy and celebration and spending time with family. After a divorce, holidays and birthdays can be a cause for anxiety as families are learning new rhythms, new traditions, and new ways to celebrate. Whether the holiday traditions are continued together or apart, reassure your child that their family loves them very much and will work together to make sure that it is still a time a joy. Determine with your ex that holidays and birthdays will be a drama free zone, and hype them up so your child has something to really look forward to.
If Mom/Dad Has A New Family, Will Another Child Replace Me?
This question can be heartbreaking to hear from your child. Amidst divorce they may worry that you will find a new partner and bring new siblings into the mix. They may be fearful that there won’t be any room left in your heart for them anymore. Let your child know that no matter who else may come along, they won’t be “your new family.” Instead they will be added to your existing family. Also encourage them that no one could ever replace them in your heart, and you will always love them.