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Helping teens through a parental divorce

Parents of teenagers in Georgia know just how emotional their children can be at this age can be. While at the height of their need thus far to pull away from moms and dads to establish their own identities, teens simultaneously continues to need parental love, support and stability. A divorce can rock a teenager's world. How can parents help their kids at this age through such an event?

Our Family Wizard suggests that parents should make a point of breaking the news about a divorce to their teenager as a unit. They should also take great care in selecting when and where such a conversation takes place. Telling a child on the way to school one morning or even on a Sunday evening the week of finals at school would not be recommended. Instead, parents should seek a time when their teens will have some time away from school to begin to process the news.

Today's Parent adds that moms and dads should be prepared for a potentially tumultuous path after breaking the news about their divorce to a teenager. It is not uncommon for a teen to be more emotional or more apt to be grouchy or edgy for a while.

Communication will be essential during this time. Even when teens appear to push parents away and reject invitations to talk, parents should not give up trying. Kids still need to know that their parents are available. When moms or dads simply stop even trying to engage their kids at this time, they run the risk of sending the message that they no longer care.




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