As the divorce rate continues to skyrocket and families that were once close become increasingly scattered about the country, maintaining a grandparent-grandchild relationship becomes even more difficult. The raw emotions of even the most civilized divorce can quickly sour relationships between the divorcing husband or wife and their in-laws — even relationships that were once warm and caring.
While this is difficult for the adults involved, it can be extremely painful for the children who lose touch with their grandparents due to power struggles and mistrust between the adults. If you are a grandparent who has become caught up in this type of situation and fear losing touch with your grandchildren, here are some proactive ways to overcome these issues and increase your chances of remaining an important part of their lives.
Neutrality is the Key to Diffusing Tension
While it is natural for the parents of the husband or wife to feel their child has been wronged in any divorce or separation, taking sides will only cause more tension between the divorcing spouses. Instead, make it a point to let both your son or daughter and their soon-to-be ex know that you wish to concentrate on helping the grandchildren through this difficult time, but you will not be involved in any of the turbulence that surrounds marital breakups.
Be a Port In A Storm — For Both Spouses
If you live nearby and have time to do so, consider offering both the mother and the father an invitation for free childcare, as well as suggesting that the kids spend some time with you each weekend so that each parent can have some time to relax.
In order for this to work, make sure that the children are not questioned about the divorce when they visit. Let the grandchildren lead the way in any discussions about their fears regarding the divorce and reassure them that while their lives may be somewhat different, they will continue to be loved by both parents and their grandparents, just as they were before the divorce.
When Goodwill Fails
While striving to keep the relationship with both sides of the divorcing couple amicable is always the best policy, it is not always possible to do so. If you find that you are being excluded from your grandchildren's lives and the matter cannot be resolved with an open, honest discussion, it may be time to seek legal action to ensure you enjoy continued contact with your grandchildren. Find a reputable child custody lawyer from a firm like Knochel Law Offices and make an appointment to discuss your concerns and see what laws your state has to assist grandparents in maintaining contact with their grandchildren.Share