As Missouri families deal with the emotional, mental and physical changes that come with divorce, the toll it takes on children can be extremely difficult. While you are dividing your assets and dealing with lawyers, there are several ways you can protect your kids from the devastating effects of divorce.

According to KidsHealth, there are several things that are vital to children as their parents divorce. Because so many things are unstable and they are not sure about what the future holds, they need as much consistency as possible. The things to be aware of as you talk to your kids about divorce include the following:

  •          Keep disruptions to a minimum in the daily activities
  •          Avoid placing blame or spreading negativity about the other parent
  •          Keep both parents involved in every aspect of the child’s life
  •          Heated discussions, visible conflict and legal talk should be kept away from the kids

Although it is always difficult to break the news about a divorce to children, it is best that both parents are present for the discussion and come without feelings of blame, guilt or anger. Discussions should match the temperament, maturity and age of the child.

Parents should also be prepared to answer questions from the kids about future living arrangements, changes to schools and if their activities, holiday and friends will change. While it can be difficult to tell young children about the reality of the divorce, one of the best ways to teach kids to cope is to be honest with them. Encourage them to express their feelings, validate their feelings and offer support to them. Adults going through a divorce should seek help from professionals, family, clergy and friends, but never from the kids.

This information is only intended to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.