Is it possible to get divorced and not drag your children into the fray? Three parents talk about their struggle to protect their children from their own emotions, while an expert advises on how to talk to teens about a break-up. Read the full article here
I read the text. I froze
By Sarah Ford
Some years ago, I discovered that my husband was having an affair. For months, we tried to cure our marriage but for months I would open the mobile phone bill and find pages of logged texts and calls to her number. I remember, with each renewed betrayal, opening the thick wad of paper necessary to itemise their sheer volume, and feeling as if I had drunk a bottle of acid. It is a singular type of torture, to maintain a smile as one doles out bolognese to one’s children, pretending everything is tickety-boo, feeling the excruciating burning of every atom of the self.
My teenage son tried to protect me
By Lucy Cavendish, divorced mother of four
As a separated mother with four children — three boys, one girl — it almost gives me a nervous breakdown to read about the tragedy of Chris Huhne and family. Yet, to a certain extent, we’ve all been through it, we divorcees. Marriages break up, people get hurt, children feel they have to take sides, regardless of how alert your emotional antenna is.
How to be a good dad after divorce
By Michael Odell, father of three
My partner and I split ten years ago by mutual consent. I can recall my eldest daughter trying to rationalise it with all the heartbreaking logic a five-year-old could muster.
“Is it because you like to go swimming and mummy can’t swim?” she asked.
I nodded because this fitted with the parent-backed communiqué that “there were just too many differences between mummy and daddy” but that we would always be there for the children and “still be friends”.