Dear mom and dad, even though we’re older…We still care.
When we talk about divorce and kids, we usually discuss the effects it’ll have on young children. After all, their time will now be split between two households and the seemingly normal life that they had before will be upended.
However, we often fail to acknowledge how a divorce will affect adult children. You might not think about it, but your kids have lived their entire adolescence and most of their adult lives with you and your ex together.
All of a sudden that bond is broken and they’re forced to rotate holidays and time spent with their parents.
It’s safe to say that divorce is hard on any child, no matter their age.
If you and your significant other are considering a divorce, you’ll also want to consider how it might impact your older children.
Here are three things to keep in mind so that you can appropriately handle the situation.
Don’t put them in the middle
Just because your kids are older doesn’t mean that they want to hear all of the details of your marriage. Yes, your kids will be supportive, but if you need to vent, confide in a friend, not your kids. You don’t want to poison the minds of your kids and build resentment towards your ex. Keep some things to yourself.
Don’t stop being a parent
As your kids get older, they won’t need you like they once did before. They’ll need you in new ways. From family holidays to weddings and everything in between, they’ll need you both to put your differences aside during these situations. Put your kids first and remember, keeping the peace is more important than sneaking in a snarky comment to your ex and creating turmoil.
Acknowledge their doubts
Your marriage was all that your kids knew. Now all of a sudden, it’s gone. This can create a sense of doubt in the minds of your children. They could begin to question the idea of marriage, and if what they believed in their whole lives was nothing but a lie. Doubts may begin to creep in and it’s your job as a parent to reassure them and help them understand that your marriage shouldn’t define their relationships. Encourage them to learn from your mistakes so that they can shape a more positive outcome for themselves.