Everything is intensified for teenagers: puberty comes with a rush of hormones that make emotions run wild, their bodies undergo radical changes, and social pressures increase. Something as life-changing as divorce happening to their parents can have severe and long-lasting effects on them. Fortunately, there are ways to effectively manage the situation in Ohio, mitigating the negative impact and even turning it into an opportunity for growth.
Plan what to say
Take some time with your soon-to-be ex to talk about what you will say, how you will approach it and when. Consider the possible practical questions your kids may have, such as “Who will I live with?” or “What happens to our house?”
Ensure you have clear but simple answers to those questions. Choose an opportune moment, free from distractions, when you can dedicate ample time to allow the conversation to unfold naturally.
Approach your kids together
Presenting a united front when going through a divorce can be reassuring for your teenage kids. It shows that even though you are splitting up, you are still a team when parenting them.
Avoid blaming each other and focus on the fact that you made this decision after careful consideration and is what is best for everyone involved. Remind your kids that both of you will always be there for them, and their happiness is the top priority.
Listen to their feelings
After passing the news, don’t just close the conversation and move on. Give your kids a chance to process their emotions and express them in a safe space. They might come to you even days later and want to talk more about it. Remember to be understanding and acknowledge their feelings without trying to fix them or invalidate them.
As you navigate this challenging time, remember that your unwavering love and support are the most crucial factors in helping your teenagers weather the storm of divorce. Be patient, as they may experience a rollercoaster of emotions and need time to adjust to their new reality. Stay open, honest and consistently reassure them that while family dynamics may change, your commitment to their well-being remains steadfast.