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How parents can help their kids deal with the divorce of grandparents

On Behalf of | Mar 11, 2024 | Divorce, Family Law |

A divorce involving grandparents aged 50 and above greatly affects not just their adult children but also their grandchildren. Kids and teens suffer from gray divorce when they suddenly can’t be with both grandparents and spend less time with them.

According to a study, having biological grandchildren is a transformative experience that helps deter gray divorce. This, however, has not stopped gray divorce rates from doubling in the past three decades. Estimates show that the gray divorce rate will triple by 2030.

Helping your children cope

As kids and teens struggle to handle the changes caused by their grandparents’ divorce, parents should find ways to help them cope. Give them platforms to process their feelings. Below are some ways to do that:

  • Inform them of the divorce right away: It’s painful enough for you to handle your parents’ divorce. But letting your children know about the divorce immediately will clear things up and help everyone adjust to the new family setup.
  • Listen to what they have to say: Ask them about how they feel about the divorce. Seek their thoughts on the changes that the family is going through. You can also ask them for suggestions on how to celebrate milestones with just one grandparent for now.
  • Have constant conversations: Talking about their grandparents’ divorce shouldn’t be a one-time thing. It may be difficult to talk about it often, but it’s better to face the issues at hand rather than ignore them.
  • Organize family activities: Show your children that life goes on. Set up activities and events where your children can bond with your parents. Adjust the timetable if the grandparents prefer to have different schedules.

Stepgrandchildren also experience the negative effects of gray divorce. Although not bound by blood, there are kids and teens who have special bonds with their stepgrandparents. It’s important to preserve and nurture their bonds amid the divorce.

Encourage co-parenting and co-grandparenting

As your parents navigate the legalities of divorce, help them heal and move on. Also encourage them to continue to be there for you and especially your children, who need their grandparents’ presence during their growing years.