Tips for Talking to Your Kids About Your Engagement
Friday, November 18, 2016 • 21 comments
Getting engaged is a wonderful time no matter what your circumstances. The excitement of picking from all of the beautiful engagement rings Atlanta, the thrill of telling your friends, and the fun of planning your big day can make this an unforgettable time in your life. However, if you already have children, whether with the person you are marrying or from a previous relationship, it can be a bit daunting explaining to them what your engagement means, and talking about their role in things.
Here are some tips for talking to young children about your new engagement.
Tell Them in the 'First Wave' of People You Talk To About It
While you probably can't wait to post your news on social media or phone up your friends to tell them you're engaged, there are usually a few people it is best to tell in a 'first wave' before you make any more public announcements. These usually include your parents, and anybody who may be directly affected by your marriage, such as ex partners who share custody of your children and, your kids themselves. The reason for speaking to them about It before it becomes common knowledge is that this way, they won't get confused by hearing other people in their lives talking about it, or be upset that other people knew something so important to their family life before they did. No matter how young they are, they will think they deserve to hear news like this first, so don't put off talking to them.
Let Them Ask Questions
Even if, in your eyes, nothing much is going to change after the wedding – for instance if your domestic situation will not change – your child may have all kinds of concerns you may not have thought about and see it as major news that could affect their future situation. Let them ask questions no matter how weird their fears may be, and answer them sincerely. If they ask if you are going to have more children, this may be a very sensitive topic for them but it is OK to say you don't know if that is the case. Understand that they may see it as a bigger change than you do, and do what you can to assure them of the level of impact it will have on their day to day lives, even if that is basically none.
Talk About the Wedding
Some kids may simply be excited that you are getting married and that they will get to be part of a wedding, especially if they have never been to one before. Talk about the type of wedding you will be having to help manage their expectations. If they are dreaming of a fairytale wedding from a Disney movie and you are planning a small, casual affair, then it is better to let them know that early on!
Kids react in all different ways to engagement news, but in most cases, you can reassure them and get them on board quite easily if you talk to them carefully as soon as you get engaged.