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10 Top Tips from Kids to other Kids going through Divorce

10 Top Tips from Kids to other Kids going through Divorce

Posted by Jess on 29/10/2014

10 Top Tips from Kids for other Kids going through divorce

If your parents are getting divorced, it can be really tough. But you’re not alone. Here are some really useful tips to help you get through it, from kids who have experienced divorce and come out stronger from it. You can too!

1. Remember, divorce is normal

Divorce is not something anyone would wish for, but it happens to over a million children a year! With the right support from those around you, and sometimes through mediation, counselling or coaching, divorce can lead to you to be stronger, more self-reliant, more empathetic and appreciative, with better insight into how relationships work and enhanced communication skills and assertiveness.

You are not the only person who is going through it, you can talk to a friend or someone else who has divorced parents.' Jane, 15

2. Don't blame yourself

It's not your fault! Your parents are separating because they are not getting on, or find living together too difficult. It is not because of anything you’ve done (or not done).

3. Don't side with one parent against the other if possible

Every situation is different, but hopefully you are able to see and spend lots of time with both parents.  Try to remain neutral, as there are always at least two sides to every story! Try to keep a good relationship with both parents (even if you think one of them did something wrong) and communicate as openly as possible so that they know how you feel.

4. Talk to your parents and friends about your feelings and needs

Don't be afraid to ask questions and to express how you’re feeling. It’s always good to talk! Writing down your feelings in a journal can also be helpful.

'Ask your parents what is going on and the reasons why. If they say you are too young, go away and ask again soon. Don't assume things, because they might not be true.' Amelie, 16

5. Remember your parents still love you

Whatever is happening between them doesn’t change how they feel about you. And even if they seem angry or stressed, that isn’t because of anything you’ve done. Divorce is really hard on parents too, so perhaps ask them what you can do to help them. We don't always like each other’s behaviour, but it doesn't stop us loving each other!

6. Know things will get better

Stay as positive as possible and focus on all the good things in your life. Remember, it is good to have fun, even if things are a little tricky.

'Always remember, even when you’re  feeling like it is the worst day of your life, that it will get better and although  everything will not be the same as it used to be, your life is not going to be any worse off just because your parents are divorced.'  Nick, 16

'If things at home are too stressful, go and stay with a friend or godparent or grandparent for a night or two just to relax a bit.' Maria, 17

7. Know that your parents aren’t always going to get things right

Your parents are human too, and they’re going to make mistakes! If you are able to, talk to them and give them a chance to explain. Be supportive of your parents, because they are learning and growing just like you.

8. Focus on your own growth and development

Keep focused on what you need to do, particularly if you have a sports competition, school work or exams coming up. And concentrate on your personal growth too: How are you nicer as a result of your parents splitting up? What have you learnt?

9. Don't try to get your parents back together

It might be hard, but it’s much better for you to let go and accept that this probably won't happen. Look towards a happy future, rather than dwelling on the past. Remember that whatever happens, you will always be a family, even if you aren't all able to be together.

10. Speak to a coach or counsellor and others who have gone through divorce

It’s always good to talk and get your feelings out, if you want to speak confidentially 1:1 a coach or counsellor could be the right route for you. Or probably lots of your friends have also gone through divorce, so get together and talk about what you’re going through with others who understand. When we started our group with our coach, Jess Strachwitz Hamilton, we all agreed not to tell anyone else what was said in our meetings, so everyone feels safe to share.

To conclude, always remember that however sad and difficult things might be through separation and divorce, give yourself time to get used to the changes and you will positively move forward with your life. You will get through it and be more than ok. Think of all the people who inspire us, what do they all have in common? They had a difficult time and then did or became something amazing (think J.K. Rowling, Thomas Edison, Robert the Bruce, Nelson Mandela). YOU will be great too.


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