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Oklahoma Divorce: How to Tell Younger Children About the Divorce

How Divorce Affects ChildrenAn Oklahoma divorce is stressful for both the parents and their kids. Unfortunately, it is difficult to predict in advance just how divorce affects children.

However, there are some ways that you can inform your children that you will be obtaining a divorce that will help minimize the effect that it will have on them.

When telling your children that you will be getting a divorce in Oklahoma, it is important to assure them that they are loved by both of you and that the divorce is not their fault. Always remember that each person is different when it comes to how divorce affects children.

Prepare Yourself on How Divorce Affects Children

It is important that you cooperate with each other to minimize the negative effect your Oklahoma divorce will have on the children. Before informing your children about your pending divorce, you should talk to each other and decide on the arrangements that will be made for the care of the children.

You should also come to an agreement on the reason that will be given for the dissolution of your marriage. This will avoid the confusion that will take place if they are told two different versions. It will also avoid putting the children in a position to feel that they have to take sides.

Generally, children will have many questions about how it will affect their lives.

For example, where they will live? Who they will live with? Where they will go to school? When they will see the absent parent? You should be prepared to answer those questions when you tell them about the divorce.

If possible, you should inform your children of your pending divorce together. This will convey to them that the divorce is a mutual decision between the two of you. It will also help the children maintain trust in both of you.

When Should You Tell Your Children

You should not tell your children that you are considering a divorce in Oklahoma until you are sure that you are going to go through with it. Telling them beforehand can result in unnecessary stress and insecurity in their lives.

The best time to tell children about the divorce is when you have time to sit down with them and answer all of their questions. It is unwise to tell them before bedtime or before you have an appointment and have to leave, or when you may be interrupted by visitors. The children will need you to be there as long as it takes to provide answers and reassurances.

What to Tell Your Children

When you sit down with the children to tell them that you are getting an Oklahoma divorce, you should make the explanation short. You might tell them that you have decided that you are not happy together and one of you will be moving out.

You should then reassure them that the divorce has nothing to do with them and is a result of an adult decision based on other issues. One of the biggest problems when it comes to how divorce affects children is many kids blame themselves. They then try to fix the problem they perceive as the cause for the divorce, which forces them to grow up far too quickly.

Many children will fantasize about their parents getting back together and things going back to the way it used to be. When telling your children about your upcoming Oklahoma divorce, it would be wise to be clear about the fact that you will not be getting back together.

What to Expect

When parents divorce, change and loss are definitely prominent when it comes to determining how divorce affects children. Each child will take the news of divorce differently.

Some will exhibit attention seeking behavior, become clingy, uncooperative or mischievous; others may be sad or angry or deny that they have any feelings on the subject at all.

The way that you talked to them about the divorce and the reassurances offered can make a difference in how the children react in the long term. Reassurance before, during and after the divorce along with consistent routines that they can rely on will go a long way in helping them cope.

During this difficult time, your children will need a lot of extra attention and affection. Keep the lines of communication open and be prepared to allow them to talk and answer their questions when needed.

Does the Children’s Preference of Who They Prefer to Live With Matter?

If your children are 12 years of age or older, the courts in Oklahoma consider them old enough to form an intelligent preference of who he or she would prefer to live with. Keep in mind that the stress of making the decision could cause significant damage when it comes to how divorce affects children; be sensitive and do not pressure your child one way or another.

The judge may interview the children to help determine if they are mature enough to form a well-reasoned preference. If he or she finds that they are, their preference will be taken into account along with other factors in determining child custody, including what is in their best interest.

Free Consultation: Tulsa Divorce Attorney

If you and your spouse have decided to obtain an Oklahoma divorce, a Tulsa divorce attorney has the experience and expertise to guide and represent you through every aspect of filing for and obtaining a divorce, including child custody. Call Divorce of Tulsa Law Office at 918-924-5526 to make an appointment for your free consultation today.