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How can you prevent divorce from hurting your children?

Divorce can have a lasting impact on your children but may be particularly difficult during the first year. If your children lack support and stability, your divorce may threaten their well-being and trigger psychological illnesses.

Knowing how you can support your children may help you ease their uncertainty during a challenging time.

Encourage coping skills

Splitting from your spouse is a significant change to your family’s dynamics. If your children are particularly close to your spouse, a departure of that parent may create resentment and trauma. Your children may struggle to cope with the idea of moving between their parents’ homes and spending important dates without one of their parents.

The uncertainty of these changing circumstances can create ongoing challenges for your children regardless of their age. Your ability to encourage coping skills and educate them about how to handle difficult emotions can provide your children with the resources they need to navigate their situation. You may also consider working with a pediatric therapist who can help your children process their feelings in a healthy and productive manner.

Maintain your integrity

You may have strong opinions about your spouse and valid reasons to terminate your marriage. However, verbalizing these feelings in front of your children can cause permanent damage. According to U.S. News, remember that you are the role model. It is your responsibility to exemplify the treatment of others. Being able to put your frustrations aside in front of your children can teach them valuable lessons about integrity and resilience.

Because divorce can have a detrimental impact on your children’s behavior, emotions and psychological health, your vigilance in supporting them are critical. Talking with them about ways to cope and choosing to maintain your integrity can help you facilitate healing.