Sadly, this happens in a lot of situations. If the child is anxious or emotionally burdened with the parents situation, it may be a good idea to have them talk to someone. In my situation, the youngest was 7 when he was taken to talk to a counselor. Though there are new issues now, at the time it did help. The counselor also talked to my husband and his ex together and told them about talking badly about the other parent in front of the children, sharing too much inappropriate information…thing that would help the situation.
She needs to be told by an “authority” figure that she is their mother and not their friend. That they are too young to understand what she is telling them and that it is NOT their problem. It is especially important for you to let them be children while they still can be. If there’s any influence there, you should inquire about why (child) has knowledge of her finacial situation…maybe bringing it to the other parent’s attention. They may not even be aware of doing it. Children are naturally inquisitive but just because they ask questions of something they overheard, does not mean that you should answer them with the complete story. Most of the time it will not affect them, sometimes they are better off not knowing, and occasionally, it’s not their business.
I’m sure that there are books out there, but just keeping in mind that they are children and that it will be years and years before they understand is enough most of the time. As a parent you have the right to question to some extent. If the other parent is not allowing them to be children, when it’s brought up to you, you should let them know that they do not need to worry about those things yet. There are some things that can be explained but for the most part, the less detail they know the better off they will be.
I still pray to this day that my stepsons do not remember much of their mom and dad’s separation year. They knew every detail and did not understand any of it. She even went so far as to let them read the court document when my husband filed for custody. At 6 & 9, how much of a court document do you think they understood?..They know that daddy said a bunch of mean stuff about mommy that she said is a lie. Why would he say that?
Let them be children and force the parent to be the adult. Tell the ex that if she can’t find someone her own age to talk to about the divorce and finances then she should seek her own counseling. Get them in to talk to someone, if there’s someone in the area.
I will keep you in my thoughts.