Taking sides

Neil Ferguson, Gillian Douglas, Nigel Lowe, Mervyn Murch and Margaret Robinson

in Grandparenting in divorced families

Published by Policy Press

Published in print January 2004 | ISBN: 9781861344984
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447302452 | DOI:
Taking sides

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This chapter observes that following parental separation and divorce, grandparents in this study usually sympathised with their adult child and criticised the behaviour of their ex-son-in-law or ex-daughter-in-law. It notes, however, that this is not the only strategy and, although it is recognised that divorce is a difficult process, some couples appeared to achieve reasonably harmonious arrangements and a minority of grandparents demonstrated that their non-partisan approach could also make a contribution to harmony. It further notes that most did not think about the longer-term implications of their relationships with an ex-child-in-law. It observes that they are often angry and some are bitterly partisan in their feelings. It further observes that some grandparents took sides after the break-up and continued to harbour strong feelings of resentment for their sons- or daughters-in-law long after their child's marriage had ended. It notes that parents often reported that their own parents ceased contact with their ex-spouse because they held him or her responsible for the failure of the marriage. It observes that this is often presented as a natural feeling and one that might reasonably be expected of grandparents in a divorced family.

Keywords: parental separation; grandparents; divorce; non-partisan approach; marriage; divorced family

Chapter.  5462 words. 

Subjects: Marriage and the Family

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