My parents are separating what should I do?
Sometimes, parents decide that they are not going to be together anymore and that they want to separate or get a divorce. It’s important to know that it’s not your fault that your parents are separating and, with the right support, your parents will be able to make a plan that has your best interests at heart.
What happens next?
Your parents will need to decide where they both will live, where you will live and how you will share your time with your parents – if it is safe for you to do so.
They will have to sort out other things like how to share their property and money, and if they are married then they will need to sort out a divorce as well, but all of these things take time and the most important thing is to make sure that you are safe and looked after.
Where can I find help?
If you would like to speak to someone, you can contact Childline by calling them on 0800 1111, have an online chat with them here or send them an email. There is a lot of useful information about family separation on the Childline website here.
Young Minds provide support for your mental health which can be accessed here.
How can I have my say?
There are different options for you to say what you would like. You may want to have a look at this film – ‘The Rights Idea? Children’s rights when parents separate’.
Child Inclusive Mediation offers children a safe and neutral space to be heard. Your feelings and wishes for the future can then be taken into account when your parents are making decisions about child arrangements.
There are 24 top tips for separating parents, written by children from the Family Justice Young People’s Board. You may want to read them and share them with your parents. You can download them here.