Navigating life after divorce with your adult children

|January 29, 2020 | divorce

Determining the best ways to parent after a divorce can be tricky. This is true no matter when you separate – even if it’s later in life.

Regardless of your children’s ages, you and your partner’s split may strongly affect them. You should proceed with caution as you process your divorce and move forward. Here are three tips for navigating life after divorce with your adult children:

  1. Be considerate of their feelings. When your child is grown-up, you might find it easier to open up to them about your divorce. Avoid this. Your child likely has confusing and negative emotions about the situation. Additionally, they may have their own adult responsibilities to worry about: college, kids, a house or car payments. If you want to talk with someone about the separation, consider contacting a therapist or a close friend.
  2. Be there for important moments. Regardless of how many years you were married, it’s probably hard for you to be near your ex following a divorce. But adult children are often experiencing a whole new set of milestones that you and your ex will both want to attend: college graduation, marriage or the birth of grandchildren. It’s critical that you put aside your differences and attend these monumental events in peace.
  3. Be thoughtful when introducing a new partner. Your children probably witnessed you with your spouse for years. It may be hard for them to see you with someone new. Therefore, you should consider when may be the best time to introduce them to a new partner. Perhaps it’s not until the divorce is finalized, or until you’re in a serious relationship. It’s helpful to think about this before you even begin dating.

Divorce impacts adult children in many different ways. Remember to be sensitive as you navigate post-divorce life with them. This can mitigate any difficult feelings they may be experiencing, and strengthen your relationship in the long run.

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