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How do you tell your child you’re getting a divorce when they’re too young to understand the concept of divorce? Experts suggest that it’s important for parents to stick to the basics. Instead of telling them you’re getting a divorce, explain to them that one parent is going to live in one house and the other parent is going to live in another house. Though this explanation will help children understand what the divorce means, your child will likely have questions about what the separation will look like for them. Here are five books that can help you explain what a separation will look like.

Living with Mom and Living with Dad by Melanie Walsh:

Why We Love It: 

There are only one or two short sentences on each page. Living with Mom and Living with Dad talks about what life is like with each parent at home, on weekends, and birthdays. Since life is discussed in a very basic and simple manner, it helps normalize the separation for the child. The child in the book explains that though she sometimes misses the parent she’s not with, the parent is always just a phone call away.

Who Would Benefit?

This would be a fantastic book for really young children. The sentences are short and the plot sticks to the basics while showing the child what life might look like after the divorce. Each page has a section that flips up to reveal another picture. The interactive nature of this book would also draw the attention of many young children.

My Two Homes by Claudia Harrington:

Why We Love It:

My Two Homes features a girl named Skye who lives with her dad sometimes and then other times, she lives with her mother and stepfather. My Two Homes shows a female protagonist who has adjusted very well to her parents’ divorce and her mother’s remarriage. Skye speaks positively about her mother, father, and her stepfather.  

Who Would Benefit?

Since the book takes place post-separation, this would be a good book for children whose parents have already separated. It would be especially beneficial for helping a child adjust to one of their parents’ remarriage. The book would probably be most beneficial  for children over the age of 5.

Two Homes by Claire Masurel:

Why We Love It:

With over 1,400 five star reviews on Amazon, Two Homes is a favorite among many parents who are explaining separation to their children. Two Homes is extremely basic; there’s often just one very short sentence on each page.

Who Would Benefit?

The short, simple sentences make the book ideal for children under the age of 4. Many parents feel that this book is great for normalizing life with parents who no longer live together. Instead of focusing on more complex issues, Two Homes focuses on life with two homes.

Standing on My Own Two Feet by Tamara Schmitz:

Why We Love It:

Standing on My Own Two Feet is written to be “a child’s affirmation of love in the midst of divorce.” The protagonist, Addison, says that he is safe and loved at both homes after the separation. He goes on to say that even though his parents don’t get along, it’s not his fault. 

Who Would Benefit?

This book would likely help younger children dealing with emotions surrounding divorce. The book’s colorful pictures and short sentences would help many children under five. While some children struggle with blame during divorce, this book makes it very clear that the child had nothing to do with the divorce. 

Was It the Chocolate Pudding? by Sandra Levins:

Why We Love It:

Was It the Chocolate Pudding is filled with adorable illustrations. It deals with the complex guilt many children feel following their parents’s divorce. The book helps explain the concept of divorce on a deeper level.

Who Would Benefit?

Because this book has multiple sentences on each page, it may be better for 6 to 8 year olds. The content of this book is also a little complex for preschoolers; the book discusses that parents often get divorced due to differences. It would be very good for children struggling with blame after the divorce. 

 

When You Need Guidance:

If you are beginning the divorce process, you likely know just how important it is to help your child navigate the separation process. Divorce is often an emotionally taxing and confusing time for many parents and children. If you have questions about your divorce, CoilLaw is here for you. Contact us to find out how we can provide clarity during this difficult time.

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