The process of divorce in Jacksonville is a trying time for everyone involved. While a lot is often said about what happens to the children of divorcing parents, what is ignored in far too many occasions is the impact that a grown child's divorce has on their mature parents. Breaking up the family unit is just as hard on everyone, particularly when you raised your child and want them to be as happy as possible.
Kenny Leigh and Associates is a men-only family law firm with six offices in Jacksonville, Fleming Island, Daytona, Gainesville, Fort Walton Beach, and Boca Raton, serving all of North and South Florida.
Other than the news of a death in the family, news of a divorce may be the hardest kind of news to handle that you are likely to receive. Particularly when there are grandchildren involved, this can be a difficult moment, regardless of how much life experience you have. The following are some coping strategies that are often effective in dealing with divorce in Jacksonville, or wherever your child may live.
Dealing With the Surprise
Naturally, almost every parent who hears that their child is getting a divorce is going to be surprised. Sometimes you may have intuited that the relationship was unsustainable, but often those kinds of feelings are just nervousness or come as a result of not knowing your child's spouse very well yet. At any rate, do your best to remember that some relationships are not able to work out and that there is no blame to be had. It is also helpful to remember that just because your child has decided to end their relationship with your son- or daughter-in-law does not mean that your relationship with the newer member of your family has to end.
Step Out of Any Guilt
Naturally, since you raised your child and provided their first example of relationships and dealing with people, you are almost certain to feel a pang of guilt. You must release this as soon as you can. Your child will always be your baby, but he or she is running a life independently of you now and has made independent decisions. Blaming anyone is both unhealthy and unproductive.
Take Loyalty Out of the Equation
In many cases, particularly when the in-law relationship is a strong one, there is a temptation to take sides. While taking sides in a divorce Jacksonville may seem satisfying at first, this is not a healthy way to proceed. Keep in mind that your loyalty is to your family and everyone involved is family. As a great person once said, a house divided cannot stand.
Particularly because of your level of life experience, you need to be level-headed and neutral. Your loyalty lies with everyone involved and your love is unconditional. So when you deal with your child, your in-law, and your grandchildren, it is important to make clear how unconditional your love and support both are.
Do Your Best Not to Worry
Trying not to worry is a lot like trying not to look down for a person who is afraid of heights, but you must do your best. Naturally, this is a trying time from an emotional and a financial perspective. But in the end, the situation will resolve itself and everyone will be happier for its conclusion. Since your child's marriage is not a happy one, its end will serve to open up the way to a happier relationship down the line.
One way to keep your worries at bay is to keep everyone involved in your life, if they want to be. Invite your grandchildren over, allow your child and your in-law to talk to you openly, and listen more than you speak. Being open and letting everyone else vent their worries is a good way to know that your worries are perfectly normal.
Make Your Desire to Visit Grandchildren Apparent
Often in a divorce there are grandchildren present. If there are not then the issue of divorce becomes a slightly easier one, but the holidays can be a trying time. One major part of getting a divorce is the stress of it all, and in that stress it is easy to forget about the people outside of the home and not involved in the strife. Since you undoubtedly want to see your grandchildren and they could definitely use a place of stability, voicing your desire to see them is paramount.
Handle the Stress as Best You Can
There is going to be stress, and it is unavoidable. Keeping up with your hobbies, friends, and doing anything else that keeps you calm is good for remaining a stable and openly-caring mature parent. You can also be a good example of staying cool under high levels of pressure.
Kenny Leigh and Associates is a men-only family law firm that has six office locations, serving Boca Raton, Daytona, Fleming Island, Fort Walton Beach, Gainesville and Jacksonville, Florida.