Kids and divorce
Stop the petty bickering and take positive steps to help your child through this difficult transition.
Telling your children that you and your partner are separating is one of the hardest things a parent can do. It’s not easy for you to tell them or for them to hear it’s something that has to be done.

Here are some Parent24 links to useful advice that can help ease the transiton:

Don’t drag it out. Talk to them as soon as possible. It’s important for parents to put aside their differences for the sake of the child.

The divorce will be hard on your child but you have to let them know and reinforce that it’s not their fault. Preschoolers tend to blame themselves for the divorce and worry about little things like who will pick them up from school or tuck them in at night. Reinforce and let them know that it’s not their fault. Reassure them that they will always come first.

Teens will take a more grown up approach to the whole situation. They will try to take on more adult roles and worry about things such as rent, groceries  and who will pick up the younger kids from school. Try to not use your teen as a confidant, even though they may seem mature they are still adolescents and that’s a rocky time all on its own.

When a couple divorces they need to come to an agreement about school fees as it’s one of the costs of raising a child. Enlist the help of the courts so that the costs are easily shared. Parents who receive maintenance are often confused about who needs to pay the school fees. The court order from the maintenance enquiry should stipulate who pays this and should clear up the confusion.

There are some ground rules parents should follow when they divorce:
  • Don’t use your child as a messenger and don’t expect them to take sides.
  • Encourage them to be there for their siblings and let them know that they’re not alone and can always voice their fears.
  • Reassure them constantly.
  • Give yourself a break. Sometimes divorce is best for everyone, including the kids.

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