It must be pretty rare for there to be a divorce with no tears, anger, pain, frustration. These are emotions and phases of almost every divorce. And not just for the husband and wife. The parents of the husband and wife, the friends of the husband and wife, and most important, the kids of the husband and wife are hit with these emotions as well.
I know our parents had a tough time. Some more than others. It was not easy. We all cared about each other, still do, maybe even more now. But, I can remember having the clarity through the early stages that everyone was entitled to the way they felt. They had every right to feel whatever they wanted to feel about the difficult situation.
But, I also had the clarity that I wasn’t going to speak poorly of my kids’ dad to anyone and I knew that he was not going to speak poorly of me either. Because we had decided between the two of us to put the kids first, to still honor each other, to still CARE for each other, we felt protective of the other when other people wanted to dig for details or pit one against the other. We weren’t going to go there.
Other than ribbing each other on something we would say to each other’s face, like I am less organized than he (he calls my house the black hole) and he can’t change a plan once it is made, just because…..we don’t talk ill about each other in front of the kids and we would never let anyone else either. So because of this, after the first few months, a funny thing happened, those closest to us started to follow our lead.
Let me say that again, they followed our lead in how we spoke of each other, talked to each other and genuinely cared for the other. I am as close now to his parents as ever. My family still sends him birthday cards and love to see him when they are in town. We all send our new family Christmas cards to the other’s family and friends!
Nothing warms my heart than walking into someone’s kitchen and seeing my family’s Christmas card next to his family’s Christmas card on the fridge. Our two kids just LOVE that they have to do two holiday card shoots lol!
Stay focused. Try to get to the point where the kids are the priority, find the place where you can still actually care about the other’s well being, try not to talk ill about the other and you will see that the people you both care about will follow your lead.
Lead them well…….