Mother and daughter face to face at home
Contact Rogoff Law Office

Talking with teens about divorce

Thousands of Illinois marriages end in divorce each year, and families are often left to deal with the aftermath. A divorce attorney in Chicago knows that children of divorcing parents have to go through some big life changes, but teenagers are likely to have different reactions than younger children. Any parents contemplating a divorce should consider how their children will be affected, and commit to providing a listening ear when needed.

In order to ease the family transitions for older children, it is important for divorcing parents to offer opportunities for conversation. The following tips can help prevent teens from withdrawing and may be able to maintain strong relationships after the breakup of a marriage.

Prepare for the announcement

The moment that a child is told his or her parents are divorcing is likely to become a memory that is not easy to forget. Parents may be able to lessen the shock of announcing their divorce to teenage children by thinking about when and where to break the news. Both mom and dad should work together to come up with a situation that they feel will be the most beneficial to all of their children.

Avoid assumptions

A divorce attorney in Chicago understands that is easy for parents to make assumptions regarding how their adolescent children will react to a divorce. If there has been a lot of conflict in the marriage, some teens may show relief; however, some may feel betrayal or intense sadness. It is important for parents to recognize all emotions and provide support regardless of how confusing some of the expressions of feelings may be.

Consider the child’s opinions

There are many complex issues that must be discussed during divorce proceedings, and many of those issues impact a couple’s children. When it is appropriate, it may be beneficial to include older children’s opinions in discussions. For example, when determining child custody arrangements, teens may want a say in where they want to spend their time. If parents cannot come to an agreement, the court is required to decide on child custody, but a judge may take a child’s wishes into consideration if it is in his or her best interest.

Take responsibility

When parents act maturely about their divorce, children are more likely to do the same. Instead of blaming one another, parents should be open about their part in the divorce. Teenagers know enough of what is going on to be aware of when their parents exhibit childish behavior.

A divorce attorney in Chicago may be able to provide advice for how to talk with teenagers about a divorce and the changes that are sure to come.

Mother and daughter face to face at home

He helps clients resolve issues relating to family law, including divorce, parenting time and parental responsibilities, paternity, and child support. As a skilled real estate attorney as well, Scott also provides advice and legal representation to clients who are purchasing or selling residential or commercial property in Illinois. 

Recent Posts