Supporting Friends and Family through Divorce – What you need to know!
Divorce is difficult, not only for those who are in it but also for friends and family.
Knowing the right or wrong thing to say can be daunting especially considering the emotional sensitivity of the topic. Pushing the wrong button at the wrong time can send your friend into either an emotional breakdown or worst even — reactive damaging behaviour.
Gone are the days when getting armchair advice from the barbershop is reliable and confidential. Life is more complicated than it was years ago; laws and legal advice are cumbersome and costly and relationships and family units are simply more complex than in the past. While our world has changed so dramatically, humans: their emotions and responses to stressful events, are pretty much the same.
There is no question that for those who are trying to help their loved ones through this journey — your words matter a lot. That brings with it a huge responsibility and sometimes a burden you did not sign up for. Your friend/family needs you and so here are a few tips for helping them and still keeping those friendly boundaries in tack:
- Help them reflect on their language to ensure they are using empowering language and not the language of a victim. Victims are stuck and will not heal until they are responsible and accountable. Yes, that means to be accountable to whatever happened.
- Do your best to remain objective. Of course, you are there for them but when they are off base — tell them so that they can begin to move on.