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telling kids

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08 Apr 07 #46 by new 1
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hi , have seperated after a 14 year marriage, parnter works away, need help in what to tell the children, will divorce but not sure if i have to wait till after 2 years, my main concern is what do i say to my children who are the ages of 10 and 12

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10 Apr 07 #55 by wikivorce team
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This is always a difficult question to answer, i will give you a few pointers - but you know your own kids better than anyone - so trust your instinct.

Key messages to get across are:

Separation is quite normal:
- that you and your ex are going to live separately, but you are still a family.
- that it is not uncommon for mums and dads to move on to a different stage in their lives.
- partners don't always live together forever.
- that many, many of the other kids at school have separated parents

You still both love them
- that you are still a family
- you still both love them very much
- that none of this is their fault

That not too much has to change:
- they can still see you both
- they can still see both sets of grandparents, aunts, uncles etc
- their life can carry on as normal.

A couple of messages for you:
- maintain their relationship with you both
- contact with both parents is critical
- keep them out of any arguments
- don't let them hear you talking badly about your ex to a friend who dropped by

Here is a website that might help:

Post edited by: admin, at: 2007/04/10 13:58

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15 May 07 #255 by Steve9995
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I have been seperated for 5 Months now and going through the divorce process. I have two children who are 5 & 7. The youngest seems to have taken the situation with a pinch of salt but the oldest took it fairly hard at first.
I can honestly say that the advise given by wiki is good but would also add that make sure you keep talking to them and asking if they have any questions. Try not to lie to them as they are not stupid. Keep it calm, to the point and try not to let it sound like it is a depressing situation. It seems to have worked for me. I hope this little piece of advice helps you.
Good luck.

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15 May 07 #258 by tigstheterror
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Just to add as well, keep things as clear and to the point as you can,kids appreciate that better.All in all just keep reassuring them and hope that your seperated partner does the same,it all helps keeping them feeling secure that both parents still love them if not each other anymore! Good luck.x

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29 May 07 #464 by violet
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I'm new to this site too. I posted the other day asking how to go about actually leaving - to my surprise - he came home the yesterday and asked for a divorce - he wanted me out by the end of a month and a divorce!!!

We sat down and actually talked, then broke the news to our children, 5 and 8 - the youngest didnt take it in, the eldest - understandbly - was upset.

However, we both sat and talked with her and explained things and I have since sat with her and explained how things are that it is not their fault, it is normal and that both parents still love them both very much.

She has become very understanding and we have both agreed to talk about things and explain things to our children.

Good luck,

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05 Jun 07 #602 by Dawn2509
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My two were 5 and 7 when we told them. We sat next to each other on the sofa, one child on each lap, and explained that we love them and always will, but don't love each other, and so Daddy will be not living in our house all the time. Apart from the youngest asking if she'd have a half-brother or sister, there were no questions, no problems, and off we all went to a firework party - so maybe a fun family outing is a good move.

12 years later, and they've been absolutely fine. I was very careful never to criticize their father while they were around, and didn't do so until they started doing so in their teens. The family joke ever since has been "Don't speak ill of the absent parent."

Maybe I was lucky, but definitely, as others have suggested, emphasize the love, and that it's not their fault.


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06 Jun 07 #634 by Dockley
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Its a tricky one and depends on ages of the kids really. My two (daughter aged 14 son aged 12 at the time) were ok with the fact that they'd moved to a new house with their mum and left me behind in the FMH, they loved coming round for tea after school most days then continuing on home early evening. The big change and i mean big was when I met my new partner. Suddenly all interest in seeing me or even having a civil word to say to me disappeared. They became hateful towards me, refused to have anything to do with me and were just totally unreasonable. Obviously their mother was fuelling their venom towards me even thhough we were already separated and had started divorce proceedings. It took about 4 months of real hard work with them to get them to come round to the way things had changed and even now they're still not totally ok with it, we still have problems 15 months down the line. If BOTH parents are prepared to put their kids first and their own feelings second then the kids should come out of it pretty ok, but if you are unfortunate enough for your ex to be a bitter twisted revengeful **** then you're in for a rough ride.
Hope it all goes ok for you and your kids

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