A 5-Step Plan to Tell Your Kids About the Divorce


If you’re thinking about filing for divorce in Pasadena, here’s a practical 5-step plan for how to gently break the news to your children.

  1. Schedule a time for your discussion when everyone can be there and no one will need to rush off to school, work, or other commitments. You and your spouse should announce the divorce together while all of the children are present to avoid having siblings feed each other misinformation. Plan on giving the kids at least an hour to process the news.
  2. Write out what you want to say. Even if you’re normally a “play it by ear” parent, this is not a discussion you want to leave to chance. Practice in front of a mirror a few times if needed. It’s important that you and your spouse present a unified front when you announce the news.
  3. Don’t give your kids the gory details. Your children don’t need to hear that financial troubles are taking their toll or that your husband cheated on you with his secretary. Adult concerns should be saved for a future discussion with your best friend. Focus on reassuring your kids that you still love them and that the breakup is not their fault. The primary message your children should take from the discussion is that you and your spouse will be doing everything possible to ensure that they can still enjoy a healthy relationship with both of their parents.
  4. Be ready for questions. It’s normal for children to have questions after they hear the news. Your children might want to know if they’re going to need to change schools or they might be worried about what will happen once you start dating again. Answer questions honestly and to the best of your ability, keeping in mind that you should remain as upbeat as possible.
  5. Create a support system. Once you’ve told the children about your divorce, make sure their teachers, coaches, babysitters, and friends’ parents know what’s going on. Ask everyone to alert you to any unusual behavior or signs your child is having trouble adjusting.

How Can We Help?

Please call our office at (626) 683-8113 or email us at info@PasadenaLawOffice.com if you are in need of legal representation during your divorce. Our Pasadena divorce law firm has extensive experience advocating for the needs of parents and their children.