The divorce process is hard enough for couples to navigate without third-party interference. However, when the third-party interference is your adult children, it can be a sticky situation.
More and more, adult children are getting involved in their parents’ divorce. This is not to say adult children should not support their parents through this difficult process. This article addresses adult children who take their involvement to an extreme. The adult children being referenced are ones that feel compelled to take sides, and consequently interfere with the divorce process. They attempt to run the show by interjecting their opinions when unnecessary, trying to make decisions for their parents, demanding to attend meetings with the attorney and parent, and expecting information from the attorney to pass through them directly. They treat the parent as if they do not have the capacity to make their own decisions when nothing is further from the truth.
What is the outcome when adult children take a such a strong position in their parents’ divorce? It causes the parents to get stirred up and/or stay stirred up, negatively impacting settlement for the divorcing couple. If divorcing couples are not given a chance to calm themselves and start working through the issues presented in their divorce, it delays the divorce process. More time will pass before the divorce can conclude, and more money will be spent.
What is the solution? The divorcing couple need to gain control and inform their adult children that they do not need such hands-on assistance in their divorce. Let your adult children know that you have competent legal representation that will guide them through the journey. Now this is easier said than done when you have adult children who feel so strongly about taking a position in their parents’ divorce. Whatever good intentions adult children may have about their involvement, often times simply causes more pain. There is nothing worse than your own child taking a position again you. And not only taking a position against you but actively involving themselves in your divorce process.
This is not to minimize that adult children experience sadness, anger, sense of loss, or confusion regarding their parents’ divorce. But if you would rather maintain control of your divorce, build boundaries with your adult children from the onset of your divorce. Perhaps your adult children will feel less likely to be the director of your divorce if: (1) you are careful about what information you share with them, (2) don’t make them feel they must take sides, and (3) don’t make your adult children your only sounding board about the struggles of your divorce, Don’t lean on your adult children exclusively as your support – showing them you can handle this situation without their hands on involvement.
GRAND RAPIDS COLLABORATIVE DIVORCE ATTORNEY SERVING KENT, OTTAWA, AND ALLEGAN COUNTY.
If you filed for divorce, or are considering filing in the near future, contact the Michigan family law attorney at Schmitt Law, PLLC. We have extensive experience handling all types of Michigan divorce cases and the related issues that frequently come up in the divorce process, including spousal support, child custody, and child support. We provide custom-tailored legal advice and solutions for clients. To learn more about how we can help you through the divorce