Books That Help Explain Divorce to Kids

A great book can help your kids make sense of what's happening -- and the complex emotions they're feeling. Consider one of these for your kiddos.

Reading books about divorce with your child can help her to open up and talk about her feelings and concerns, as well as reassure her that what she's experiencing is normal. It also opens the door for questions that your child might not otherwise be comfortable bringing up. Here are some excellent children's books about divorce for your family to read together.

Dinosaurs Divorce

By Laurene Krasny Brown and Marc Brown (1988)
Ages 3 to 7

In this picture book, the dinosaur family explores why parents get divorced and what happens after a divorce. It answers common questions that children might have, such as what's going to happen to me, where will holidays be celebrated, and what is it like to live in two homes.

It's Not Your Fault, Koko Bear

By Vicki Lansky (1997)
Ages 3 to 7

When Koko Bear's parents get divorced, the cub experiences a range of emotions, including anger, guilt, confusion, and sadness. Each page features advice for parents on how to help children identify and express feelings.

Two Homes

By Claire Masurel (2003)
Ages 3 to 7

Sometimes Alex lives with his daddy in a suburban home and sometimes with his mommy in a city home. He has two bedrooms, two favorite chairs, two sets of friends -- two of everything! This book helps kids to understand that they are loved by both parents, regardless of where they are living.

The Invisible String

By Patrice Karst (2000)
Ages 3 and up

This book doesn't specifically address divorce, but it's a heartwarming story that reassures children that even though they can't always be with a loved one, they're always in each other's hearts. Whenever a child thinks about a family member, the invisible string gives a tug.

My Family's Changing

By Pat Thomas (1999)
Ages 4 and up

This picture book introduces the concept of divorce and how it affects family members. A "What about you" section features questions that parents can ask young children to help them explore their feelings.

I Don't Want to Talk About It

By Jeanie Franz Ransom (2000)
Ages 5 and up

A young girl imagines herself as animals to deal with her feelings about her parents' divorce. When her father tells her that it's okay to be scared, she says: "I wanted to be a lion with a roar so loud that everyone would think I was very brave." Throughout the book, both parents offer assurances that their love for her will never change and that certain family rituals will remain the same.

What Can I Do? A Book for Children of Divorce

By Danielle Lowry (2002)
Ages 8 and up

Rosie tries everything to keep her parents together: She cleans the house, gets good grades, and offers her piggy bank money. When her parents split anyway, a confused and sad Rosie joins a support group for kids from divorced families who show her that life can be happy.

A Smart Girl's Guide to Her Parent's Divorce

By Nancy Holyoke (2009)
Ages 8 and up

This book, published by American Girl, covers various aspects of divorce, from the initial split-up to a parent's remarriage. It includes quizzes, tips, and advice from children of divorce.

Divorce Is Not the End of the World

By Zoe and Evan Stern (2008)
Ages 8 and up

After their parents divorced, siblings Zoe and Evan Stern, then ages 15 and 13, wrote this positive and practical guide for kids (their writer mom helped). The book tackles topics such as managing emotions like guilt, anger, and fear; adjusting to different rules in different houses; dealing with special occasions like birthdays; and adapting to stepparents and blended families.

Mom's House, Dad's House for Kids

By Isolina Ricci (2006)
Ages 10 and up

A family therapist wrote this guidebook to help tweens and teens deal with dueling house rules and schedules, staying neutral when parents disagree, and managing stress, guilt, and other emotions. The book includes handy, easy-to-use lists and worksheets.

Copyright © 2013 Meredith Corporation.