Adults usually know that children did not cause them to get divorced. They know it was something else entirely, perhaps something the child isn’t even aware of. Maybe the family is facing overwhelming financial stress, or maybe one person was unfaithful to the marriage.
Are you in this position? Even if you believe that it’s very clear that your child didn’t cause you to get divorced, it is important to tell them explicitly. Do not assume that they know or understand. It’s very common for children to believe that they have caused the divorce and that everything is somehow their own fault. You need to tell them repeatedly to ensure that they know that you still love them, your other co-parent still loves them, and that none of this was due to anything they did or failed to do.
Why do children think it’s their fault?
One reason that children often assume they caused a divorce is because they have a very egocentric worldview. They’re always just focused on themselves. They see themselves as the center of this world and they naturally assume that everything that happens is their own fault.
Additionally, some children are more predisposed to believe that negative events are their fault. They may come to believe this because they have done the wrong thing and been punished in the past. They assume that a negative event means they must have done the wrong thing.
Finding a custody solution
This is just one of the complications that can arise when parents get divorced. Not only do you need to know how to talk to the children at this time, but you also need to know about your legal options to set up an appropriate custody solution.