Themes regarding divorce #3

by Rod Smith

My ex has a really nice family. These are people I know well and have been very close for years. Two of these dear people are my children’s grandparents. My ex wants me to have nothing to do with any of these people anymore. What do I do about this?

You divorced your spouse, not her/his family. I am aware some would disagree but I do think it is possible for mature adults to maintain healthy relationships with family-by-marriage people. I will not pretend it will be easy or comfortable but it is possible.

While I’d suggest you do not go out of your way to humiliate an ex I’d suggest you not afford that person undue power. Give the divorce a little room to breathe – a few months perhaps – and then see how much interest remains in servicing relationships with members of your family-by-marriage. Those that continue to possess vitality will probably endure; others are likely to drop away. 

Grandparents? If they are of sound mind and generally regarded as good people I’d suggest you fully cooperate in fostering their relationships with your children and your relationship with them. 

Please, resist any urge to punish children or grandparents because things have not worked in a marriage.

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