4 Helpful Tips for Communicating with In-Laws During and After a Separation
A separation with your partner is sure to strain the relationship with your in-laws, whether the relationship was great or not pre-separation.
While you may not consider the loss of your relationship with your in-laws significant, it can pose problems for you if you need to speak to your in-laws about child care or custody issues. Your in-laws may also be the only conduit whereby you can relay and receive messages.
There are several good reasons why you should keep an open line of communication with your in-laws, even while separated from your partner. Doing so, however, is not always easy, especially if you and your partner have children together.
1. Do Not Disparage Your Partner to Your In-Laws
Remember, they are your in-laws, but they are your partner’s family first. Do not expect that they will take your side in arguments about your partner, and avoid the temptation to talk about things you know will upset them. If your in-laws attempt to instigate conflict, decline to participate and firmly ask that they keep their comments to themselves.
2. Set Boundaries, Especially if You Have Children
While you and your partner were together, your in-laws may have been used to unfettered access to your children, but your in-laws must understand that this is no longer guaranteed. Politely but firmly remind your in-laws, if necessary, that you are the parent and that your time with your children is primarily for you.
If you do choose to allow your in-laws to have time with your children while your children are with you, communicate clearly what that access will be. Enforce whatever boundaries and limitations you set with gentle but firm reminders.
3. Do Not Assume You Are Welcome at Your In-Laws’ Home
Unless your in-laws say otherwise, you should not assume that you have the same access to your in-laws that you did when you and your partner were together. Do not invite yourself to family get-togethers or events unless you have been invited. If you are not sure what you can and cannot do, ask your in-laws to clarify their boundaries and expectations.
4. Stay Focused on the Bigger Picture
If you do not have children, remember that you want as clean and amicable a separation from your partner as possible. If you do have children, you want to cause the least amount of struggle and turmoil for your children. You advance both goals when you treat your in-laws with respect during and after your separation.
Additional Help with Your Divorce Case Is Just a Call Away
Separation can be messy and difficult, but having an experienced advocate beside you can help guide you through the process and advise you on ways to make relating to your partner, in-laws, and family easier.
If you are ready to move forward with your divorce, talk with us at Gucciardo Family Law. Our dedicated and qualified team is ready and eager to assist you in resolving your Michigan divorce.
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