In general, divorce rates among young adults are lower than they once were. In fact, it’s their parents’ generation that is experiencing higher divorce rates. However, young adults (commonly known as millennials) still divorce for any number of reasons.
Parents are sometimes among the last to hear about their children’s marital break-ups, so don’t be angry or hurt if you weren’t told sooner. Your child may be living far away, so you didn’t see the marital relationship up close. Further, kids often keep their marital problems away from their parents because they don’t want to disappoint them or get them involved.
It’s understandable to feel sadness about your child’s marital break-up. Even if you weren’t fond of your son- or daughter-in-law, you nonetheless wanted the marriage to work — particularly if there are children involved. If the divorce is the result of something your child did (such as infidelity), it’s natural to feel disappointed and even a bit angry with your son or daughter.
No matter how you personally feel about the divorce, it’s essential to be supportive in whatever way you can. Both spouses may need your emotional support. If you have grandchildren, you can lend a hand and take them for a day or weekend or help with school drop-offs and pick-ups if you live nearby. Just don’t express your opinions — particularly negative ones — to them. Focus on what they need.
Be careful about taking sides or expressing anger towards your son- or daughter-in-law, especially if they have kids. That in-law will be in your life for a long time, and you’ll need to find a way to deal with that person if you want to remain an important part of your grandkids’ lives. The things you say and do while they’re going through this will be remembered.
If your child needs financial help to get through this time, it’s fine to provide that. However, don’t help him or her hide income, property or other assets or engage in any sort of activity that could end up hurting your child more than helping.
It’s best to stay out of the legal aspects of the divorce. As long as your child has an experienced Florida family law attorney, let that attorney be the one to provide legal guidance.