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Relationship expert: Take time to repeatedly tell kids about divorce

It is perfectly understandable that parents would be apprehensive about discussing divorce with their children. A professor and director of a family studies program says that sometimes parents try to get by spending just a few minutes explaining their divorce to their kids.

Dr. Carol Bruess says research shows that about 75 percent of parents are not doing enough discussing of the divorce, spending an average of only 10 minutes talking about it with their kids. While she doesn't advocate an in-depth explanation of child custody disputes or other divorce matters, Bruess does urge parents to reassure the kids that the split is not their fault and was not something they could have prevented. 

She said parents who are doing a good job of communicating are having multiple conversations with their kids, "emphasizing that it is not their fault." She said a lot of children think that if only they had behaved better or been a better student or kept their room cleaner, the divorce would not be taking place.

"You want to make sure you're letting your kids know, over and over, that 'there is nothing that you could have done, this is an adult decision'" to divorce, she said in a TV interview.

She added that another thing parents who do divorce well do with their kids is to reassure them that though change is coming to their family, they will all still be a family. The parents will continue to be parents and both will love the kids and be there for them.

Divorce is not easy, but with the help of friends and family, especially, it can be done well, so that you can look back on a trying time and know you did your best to protect your children.

An experienced Butler County family law attorney can provide the calm and competent legal guidance you need to get you through divorce and child custody disputes.

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