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How can kids better cope with divorce?

There are books and websites that give plenty of advice to parents and adults on how to cope with divorce. Parents typically put their children first and try to do everything they can to help them get through the divorce. It’s not an easy process but it is very doable with a little support.

If your child is at an age where you can have an adult-like conversation with him or her, it might be helpful to discuss some tips as to how he or she can cope with the divorce. Remember, just because the child is of age to have this discussion, doesn’t mean they need to know the intricacies of your divorce. Older children will want to know some basics so they can have an understanding of what happened, but they definitely do not need details.

When you talk to your children, remind them that their role is to be a child and enjoy their childhood. They do not need to be your protector, your mediator or the new homemaker. They just need to be kids. This also means that you, as a parent, should not put your kids in those roles. Make sure you do not force your children to take sides and if you notice them taking sides, try to stay neutral.

Remind your child that the divorce is not his or her fault. Allow your child to grieve the loss of the family as it is and give them time to adapt to changes. He or she may try to keep you two together and that is understandable.

If the child is having a hard time dealing with the changes, make sure he or she has someone to talk with about his or her feelings. The child might have a hard time speaking with you so a counselor or a friend may be a good idea.

The divorce process isn’t always easy, but with some forethought, it can be manageable and children can thrive.

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