Brian D. Perskin & Associates

Dealing with In-Laws During Divorce

When you are married to someone, you often become close to their family, especially if the marriage lasts several years. The relationship usually becomes closer once you have children, as your in-laws want to see their grandchildren. For this reason, you should try to keep the relationship at least civil, if not downright friendly, when you divorce. Get some tips on how to do to this.

Keep Your In-Laws Updated

Don't let them find out about the divorce on Facebook. Instead, as soon as you and your spouse have come to a decision, let his or her parents know. Of course, this should be your spouse's job, but it is up to you to make sure he or she has told the parents before you announce the divorce. As you begin to move on, you should continue to keep them updated on changes, such as your phone number and address. . This is particularly important if you have children who see their grandparents, since they need to be able to contact you in an emergency.

Don't Insult Your Spouse Around Your In-Laws

Even if you are close to your in-laws, you cannot expect them to tolerate you insulting their son or daughter. If they think their child is in the wrong when it comes to the divorce, you can let them vent to you about it. They may apologize for your spouse's actions, or even say they wish he or she would stay with you. You can agree that your spouse has done something wrong, but refrain from slinging insults, even when you are sure your in-laws are on your side. It is painful to hear hurtful things about a family member, so you are better off venting to a friend if you need to, not your spouse's parents.

Avoid Using Your Children as Weapons

If your in-laws are being unreasonable during the divorce, it may be tempting to claim they cannot see their grandkids. However, this only serves to hurt your children, especially if they are close with their grandparents. In addition, your in-laws may end up going to court to get visitation rights, and the judge may rule in their favor if seeing the grandparents is in the best interests of the kids. It is better to agree on visitation on your own, rather than getting a court order.

For this reason, you should try to allow your kids to see their grandparents as much as they did during your marriage. Keep in mind that they are already going through a change with your divorce, and keeping them from your spouse's relatives can make the transition even harder. Therefore, even if you dislike your in-laws, they are still your kids' grandparents, and your children deserve to get to know them.

If you are having trouble being nice to your in-laws, or if they constantly say mean things to you, it is best to simply avoid contact with them as much as possible. Fighting back will not help your case, so you should minimize contact, and instead focus on the people in your life who do appreciate you.