How to Tell Your Family, Friends, and Co-Workers You're Getting a Divorce

Aaron Dishon

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Divorce / Separation Lawyer

Contributor Level 10

Posted about 4 years ago. 1 helpful vote



Tell your children about the divorce first

Your children need to hear about the divorce from both you and your spouse. Make sure they do not hear about it from anyone else first. Sit down with your children to explain the situation calmly. Be open to their questions both initially and as the divorce progresses. You might consider looking at the California Center for Families, Children & the Courts website where you can find resources including the children's book "What's Happening in Court?"


Prepare for a conversation with your family

If you and your spouse get along well enough to tell your families together, then do so. You will prove that your relationship will be amicable and that you will move on to be happy, single people. However, if you cannot get along well enough to tell your families together, then avoid it at all costs. An argument could lead the in-laws to dislike your spouse making a difficult situation even more difficult. Whichever method you choose, practice what you will say. This ensures you keep your cool and say what you mean to say.


Talking with friends about your divorce

Most married couples have married couple friends, which means future gatherings will be different, and life as everyone knows it will change. In light of this fact, be prepared to answer the same questions over and over again. Some friends may choose to take sides and some may act indifferent. Regardless, be prepared for a mixed response by taking their responses in stride. Remember, you don't have to be friends with everyone. Choose to surround yourself with positive people who will support you during this tough time.


Telling your co-workers about a divorce

It's likely your co-workers have noticed that you haven't been yourself or that you've been out "sick" more often than normal -- use this as your opening. Explain to your co-workers why you have behaved the way you have lately. Reassure your co-workers and your employer that you are on the road to recovery. An additional note on telling your employer about your divorce: Consider telling him or her before you tell the rest of your co-workers. Your company may have a policy on this type of issue or you may find that he or she can assist you. Whatever you do, don't just spring a name change on your co-workers. This will spark more questions than you want to handle.

Additional Resources

California Center for Children, Families & the Courts Children's Book: "What's Happening in Court?"

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