How to be supportive when your loved ones divorce
If someone you care about has decided to seek a divorce, you may be understandably confused as to how to support him or her. After all, everyone handles sensitive matters in different ways. Therefore, the ways in which you may have supported someone who opted to navigate the divorce process in the past may not be effective when it comes to your loved one who is seeking a divorce now.
Thankfully, there are a few tips that may prove beneficial if you are willing to keep them in mind. First, please understand that your loved one has almost certainly not arrived at the decision to seek a divorce lightly. Therefore, it is generally a good idea to avoid asking if your loved one is sure about this decision. It is also generally a good idea to avoid asking your loved one to reconsider. Being supportive generally requires accepting your loved one’s decision for what it is.
Second, please be mindful if you feel the need to question or criticize the ways in which your loved one is handling the fallout from his or her divorce. Because everyone handles challenges differently, your loved one may be processing his or her divorce at a different speed or in different ways than you would. Unless he or she is being truly destructive, it may be best to allow your loved one to work out the processes of grieving and transitioning to the single life for himself or herself.
Finally, consider making yourself available in whatever way suits you. Individuals who are divorcing require all kinds of support. Perhaps you can be someone who lends a shoulder to cry on. Or perhaps you can provide entertainment and distraction. Or perhaps you can babysit so your loved one can have some time alone. Whatever love and support you are willing to give will almost certainly be appreciated in time.
Source: The Huffington Post, “Divorce Doesn’t Go Away and 9 Other Pointers Every Divorced Person Needs You to Know,” Abby Rodman, July 1, 2015