There has been a sharp rise in couples divorcing later on in life. Numerous reasons lead to this, such as unhappy couples seeking a divorce only after their children have grown and are financially stable, or a recent infidelity. Whatever the reason, adult children can really feel the effects of their parents divorcing.
There is much publicity about the effects of divorce on young children. The obvious practicalities of having to live with only one parent and the emotional effects of the family turmoil. However, there are many things that parents can do to protect their children from the effects of divorce, especially when they are too young to understand what is going on.
However, when your children are adults they will understand and they will be affected by a divorce. This often comes as a surprise to the couple involved, especially if they have postponed the inevitable for the sake of their children. Grown up children will have had something that they have taken for-granted suddenly removed from them and, as adults, will feel an enormous sense of responsibility over the well being of their parents. Here are a few tips for older adults seeking a divorce to avoid any conflicts and hurt among the whole family:
When children become adults they will expect to be treated as like adults. Communicate with them as early as possible when things are going wrong. Don’t just drop the bombshell on them out of the blue.
Children are not messengers
Do not use your adult children as messengers between you and your former spouse. Anything which places them in an awkward situation will also place a great stress on them. No matter how tempting it is do not ask them to transmit messages for you.
Let them be angry
If you have committed adultery do not be surprised if your adult children are furious with you and side whole-heartedly with the other parent. This is to be expected. Give them time to cool off. If you committed adultery because your marriage was unhappy and you already had problems, explain this to them to help them to understand your actions. Likewise, do not try to win your child’s affection and get them to resent the other parent. As adults they will see through this pretty quickly.
Introduce new partners to your children gently. Do not expect them to be over the moon with any new situations. As time goes on and your children see that you are happy then they will warm to them, but adult children won’t be as accepting as younger children with welcoming strangers into family life, especially if you have grandchildren.
You may find that you get to know your children in a whole new way and become firm friends with them as they help you through your life transition. However, remember that you are still parent and child and children never, under any circumstances, want to know about a parent’s sex-life. By all means confide in your children and let them know that you are happy, but do not tell them the details that will make them cringe.
Talk to Grant Stephens, divorce lawyers in Cardiff to help you through your divorce.