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How to tell children we are separating? And how to deal with the early days?

2 replies

thebighouse · 20/12/2011 20:23

They are 5 and 10 and I don't think they have any idea there is anything wrong.

I am moving out to live four doors away in a rented house. DH is refusing to move out, although this is definitely what the children would prefer. We will have 50\50 care of them.

I am not sure how to tell them, and also how to deal with the early days. After we've told them, can I just start by 'going back to mummy's house' after they are in bed? I've read the book 'Putting children first' but the advice is really contradictory - on one page, it says to keep the daily routine the same as usual, on another, it says to keep to strict 'mummy' and 'daddy' days from the very beginning! I've no idea what to do!

OP posts:
WhingingNinja · 20/12/2011 20:30

Firstly I wouldn't move out without the children. Whilst things are amicable now they may not be as the seperation moves along and being the non resident parent has its complications if things deteriorate.

As for telling them, you shouuld both be there. Tell them that sometimes people can be very good freinds and love each other but they sometimes feel that it is making them feel sad to live together. So mummy and daddy are going to live in seperate houses. Reasure them that they will be seeing mummt and daddy just as much as they always have, that they will still do xyz together and that you both love them very much.
Answer any questions they have as honestly as possible. Children are innocent, not stupid. If you try and make up fairy tales they will see through it sooner rather than later and feel mistrust towards you.

MJinSparklyStockings · 20/12/2011 20:35

With DS1 who was 5 when we split, exh and I did still spend time with him as a family, he is 16 now and is really positive about his experiences as the child of separated parents who co-parented from the start.

We didnt really tell him anything, I just moved into my house, he came with me, made a huge fuss of decorating his room, etc. My exh also refused to move out.

It was a shock to him as he didnt know anything was wrong, I cant help you with your 10 year old other than to say, in my extensive (have SCs as well) experience, try, try, try not to let things between the 2 of you get hostile.

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