Dear Savvy Auntie,

My husband and I have been together for five years and have recently decided to divorce. I'm very close with my eight-year-old goddaughter, and even though she has never been close with my husband, my heart is breaking having to tell her the news. She has cerebral palsy spasticity and I'm sensitive to adding any more stress in her life.

Part of my ongoing challenges with my husband is that he feels that he can reprimand my goddaughter and is very critical of her (and my other family members)

Do you have advice for how I can explain divorce to my goddaughter?

Divorcing Godmama

Dear Divorcing Godmama,

You can talk to your goddaughter about grown ups sometimes have problems and they try to work them out...  but often they don’t work out.

Remind her that you love her and tell her when you and your husband will see her, how your divorce will probably effect her directly, and what you will do on those occasions.

I suggest you look at The Boys and Girls Book About Divorce: For Children and Their Divorced Parents--The Essential Book by Richard Gardner. If you think it would be helpful, you can give it to your goddaughter so she can look through it.

Good Luck,
Natalie Garfield

Photo: fizkes


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