It’s a misconception that when parents divorce it doesn’t affect adult children. It is important to remember that our children may be adults (and even may have experienced divorce themselves), but they are still children of both parents. In going through divorce, many parents “lean” on their children, making them into confidantes and, sometimes, surrogate spouses. Children, even adult children, are uncomfortable with details of their parents’ personal life. Confiding to a child about a parent’s indiscretions puts the child in a no-win situation.
When it comes to raising happy children, some parenting approaches are more effective than others. Well adjusted and happy adults tend to be raised by parents who were caring and engaged, but also set and enforce high expectations for behavior.
Psychotherapist Donna F. Ferber penned this post back in 2015. It is still a good read about the struggles a newly divorced person experiences during the summer holidays.
Bad stuff happens to our kids every day. Wise parents don’t go to extraordinary means to protect kids from life, but rather they help their children manage minor frustrations or major traumas. These are the ways I approach these kids in my office.
It’s a time of year with many holiday celebrations and gatherings. These are joyous experiences for many, but a difficult time for others. Our lives are not like a Hallmark Channel story with freshly baked cookies, fake snow, and conflicts that always have happy endings.