Talking to Kids about Divorce
Divorce is such a common thing in this country that it's bound to affect your kid's life in some way. Even if you aren't divorced chances are you and your child know someone who is. Whether it their friend's parents, their grandparents, or just a neighbor, your kid will probably learn about it at a pretty young age.
My parents are divorced and both are remarried. My grandparents on my mother's side are divorced. My great grandfather divorced his first wife back in the 1920s. Someday I will have to explain to Avery why she has 4 grandparents on my side. So when I saw this article about how a father told his son about how his dad left his mom I was intrigued.
He didn't really plan to talk about it. He was working in the yard with his son, Tristan, and the boy wanted to go off and play. In an effort to get him to focus on the task at hand he casually said “My dad wasn’t around when I was a kid. I’d have loved to help him unload dirt.” Tristan was suddenly curious and asked his dad what he meant. Then all of the "why", and "what's cheating?", and "who's Grandpa Kent if he's not your dad?" questions came out. He answered as best he could, but was a bit shocked at how unprepared he was to talk about it. Divorce had been such a part of his own childhood it didn't occur to him that it could be such a foreign concept to Tristan.
I don't know if I'll plan some serious sit down with Avery to explain the situation about my parents or if I'll wait for her to bring it up. Either way, this article made me realize that I should think about it a bit more.
Have you talked to your kids about divorce? How was the conversation brought up and what did you say? How did they react?
I don't know what I would tell Nina if she ever asks why she doesn't know her grandpa jim (my dad)...As far as I'm concerned, her only grandpas are my step-dad and my husband's dad who died a long time ago. I can't imagine my husband and I getting divorced...if I ever did have to explain it, I'd try to do a better job than my parents did.