The Role of Grandparents after a Scottsdale Divorce

It's not often addressed, but grandparents can suffer after a Scottsdale divorce. Depending on your relationship with the parents, you may be unable to see your grandchildren as often as you like... or at all. If the custodial parent moves away after the divorce, it can be heartbreaking for Grandma and Grandpa, and we know you worry about maintaining a loving relationship with the kids.

Here are a few tips for grandparents to help their grandchildren transition through divorce in Arizona:

  • If the kids want to talk, listen. Although you shouldn't pry too hard into a child's feelings about the divorce, they will often open up on their own. Many children find it's easier to talk to a grandparent because they don't have to "take sides." Listen carefully, and offer love, positivity, and assurance. 
  • Make your house a "safe place." In the turmoil accompanying a divorce, many children are constantly bombarded with stress, anxiety, and the tension between Mom and Dad. Make your house a neutral escape from that stress by focusing on quality time with your grandchildren and not on the divorce.
  • Stay neutral. Most children feel distress when their parents fight, and they may have trouble navigating their feelings or feel pressured to take sides. Don't speak negatively about either parent while the kids are listening, even if you are not speaking directly to the children. Little ears pick up EVERYTHING, and it makes a big difference in how they handle the divorce process.
  • Bring concerns to the parents, but be careful. If a child tells you something that concerns you or is showing strange behaviors, let the parents know, but be attentive to how you bring it up. If there has been a lot of conflict in the divorce, it's likely your concerns could stir up a lot of angry emotions. Be sure you talk about it when the child is elsewhere, and be careful not to make the child feel as though they are "in trouble" for talking about it with you.

Ultimately, the best way to help your grandchildren deal with the divorce is to keep providing the same love, care, and attention you always have. If you need help obtaining grandparent visitation rights after a divorce in Arizona, contact a friendly and experienced Scottsdale child custody lawyer today at 1-888-929-5292 for a completely free, no-pressure meeting to learn about your rights. If you'd like more information about who we are and what we do, request your free copy of our helpful book, Arizona Family Law - How to Handle Tough Issues in Tough Times.