During the last 30 years in Switzerland divorces almost duplicated. More than 45 % of children facing divorces of their parents were underage. Divorce is a life-changing experience; not only for the partners, but as well for the children. One of the key questions is: how to communicate with the kids about the divorce in a smooth way, which makes them not feel guilty about the failure of their parents‘ divorce?
First : it is very important for the well-being of the children to agree as a couple on a strategy of communication and explanation, to make them understand why parents split up.
Second: a smooth transition from being a family to separateness should be everyone’s clear intention to make sure that the emotional trauma can be minimised. Children don’t want that parents say anything unkind about their dads or mums. As they feel half of the other person too, it makes them feel sad if they are used as messengers between both. And parents should not fight or argue in front of the kids.
Third: it is important that parents take the ownership of the marriage ending. This requires an open, friendly, clearly and fair conversation. Independent from the kid’s age. If children are of different ages it is important that the parents (ideally together) talk to them, at the same time.
This will protect the children that they don’t feel guilty about the separation of their parents. Explain them that it was an adult decision, that sometimes adults change the way they love each other or can’t agree on things and so they have to live apart.
It is important as well that parents make sure at the same time that they still love them and will continue to be in their parent’s role. With honesty, loving, listening, patience and reassurance parents will be able to make their kids understand. This will protect the children that they don’t feel guilty about the separation of their parents.
Only1life is supporting parents by giving guidance in communicating with your children. As well #Only1life is working together with the psychological team of University of Zurich, by offering support in special workshops for kids of divorced parents.
As well we offer #divorce rituals and church services in which parents can give a strong statement by a divorce ritual to their kids. More details about divorce rituals here.
It is important that not only the divorcees, but as well their kids will be able to live a happy and fulfilled life, even after the divorce. It takes time, but with love, understanding and patience it will be possible. You need advice in the communication with your kids? Take advantage of our support. You and your kids have only1life.
Brigitte Kaps, CEO Only1life AG