If you have made the difficult decision to divorce your spouse, your top priority is undoubtedly the emotional well-being of your children. After all, from academic issues to serious depression, the emotional consequences kids face because of their parents’ divorces can be both extreme and long-lasting.
While there are many ways to minimize the emotional fallout your children experience during your divorce, you must be careful when breaking the news to them. Put simply, timing is critical. Here are three times you should not tell your kids about your upcoming divorce.
1. During a fight with your spouse
If your marriage has been a contentious one, you may have verbal fights even more frequently in the lead-up to your divorce. While not fighting in front of your children makes sense for a variety of reasons, it is not wise to announce your divorce during a fight with your soon-to-be ex-husband or -wife. After all, when you are angry, you may blurt out hurtful words your kids never forget.
2. During a special occasion
Your children look forward to their birthdays, the holidays and other special family events. Even though everyone is together during these times, you do not want the young ones in your family to associate special occasions with the end of your marriage.
3. During busy times
As a parent, you constantly juggle your family and work obligations. If you are too busy to answer your children’s questions, you should probably not announce your impending divorce. Remember, your kids are likely to benefit from an open-ended opportunity to discuss their concerns and fears with you immediately after your divorce announcement.
Ultimately, while it may be tempting to keep your kids in the dark as long as possible, picking the right time to tell them about your divorce ensures they feel like the priority they are.