Dad consoling grown son

How to Talk About Your Divorce with Family

Divorce is a significant life change that can sometimes come as a shock to those closest to you. Although bringing up the subject can be tricky, having a support system is helpful when navigating all of the unknowns. During this time, you might be experiencing anxiety leading up to telling your family what is going on. Ultimately, it is up to you to know how much information to share and when.


Knowing what to say before this discussion helps prepare you for possible questions they may ask. Our team of experienced attorneys wants to help you navigate how to talk to your most trusted confidants and ensure the best support system possible.

Tell Your Kids First

Let your children know what is going on and what to expect during this process. This will help them process the situation and avoid the possibility of being blindsided by finding out about the divorce from another source.

Keep It Simple

Finding the words to say can be challenging. Start by telling your parents and your spouse's parents first. It is unnecessary to tell distant relatives or people who are not involved in your daily life. Odds are, they will find out eventually.


Keeping the subject simple is the best way to address this daunting discussion. With as much composure as possible, deliver the message calmly and avoid giving too many details or blaming one another. Placing blame can cause more tension and animosity between both parties, making this already less-than-ideal situation more challenging.

Be Patient

Remember, you have had time to think about what is happening. Your family members have just found out and haven’t had much time to let it sink in. Be prepared to answer their questions with as much grace and patience as possible. It is only natural for them to want to know what factors lead you and your spouse to this decision.

Set Boundaries

There will be details that will be better to keep between you and your spouse, and it is important not to feel obligated to answer every question your family asks. Complex topics such as child support, property division, or spousal support are examples of information better dealt with privately to circumvent outside influence.


It is helpful to let family members know there are aspects of the divorce you won't be discussing. Set clear boundaries to help control the conversation and stay on task. An excellent way to do this is by saying, "I am sure you can understand this is difficult for me, and I would appreciate your understanding that I do not want to disclose every detail of our situation."


To seek further guidance regarding the treacherous aspects involved with divorce, contact the Family Law San Diego team today at (619) 577-4900.