How are adult children affected by their parents divorce?

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When one part of the system changes, the entire system is changed. A divorce may affect your children regardless of their age or status in life. Their reference point for relationships is what they witnessed between you and your spouse growing up, and that relationship changing will require time for them to adjust. Adult children have long-established family rituals and memories more so than younger children. So in some sense, the divorce can cause more of an impact with adult children. Some of the intangible impacts include; no longer sharing family holidays together, having to meet mom/dad’s new significant other or attending life events such as graduations or weddings. It can be difficult for friends to relate when parents divorce later in life. Lacking support, adult children often decide that there is something wrong with them resulting in issues at work, school and in their personal relationships. Some adult children may even find themselves avoiding commitment or being cynical about love. We work with adult children who’s parents have recently divorced and/or remarried so that they have permission to grieve the loss of their family, supporting them through the feelings of denial, sadness and anger. This outlet helps adult children find peaceful transitions.

Vivienne Cameron Ovid, MS, CAP with Genesis Counseling & Consulting, Inc. in Boca Raton, Florida

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