Friday, August 8, 2014

What People Say

If there's one thing I've learned in my 28 years here on earth, it's that people will always have an opinion about something. And divorce is certainly no exception. As an ACOD, I have been on the receiving end of many rude comments. Here's a sampling:

"You're an adult, so you need to support your parents."
"You don't live at home anymore so this won't affect you as much."
"At least your family was together for so many years."

That last one's the real kicker. If anything, that's what makes the whole process so much more painful. People don't understand that ACODs are grieving a loss of their family. The loss of family rituals. The loss of their foundation. So who's job is it to clue them in?

Not yours.

Let's face it: you're dealing with a lot right now. And the last thing you need is to be held accountable for the emotions you're feeling as a result of your parents' divorce. My suggestion? Just leave it alone. Don't respond and don't engage them in a debate or argument. Neither side will win and it will only make you more frustrated. Not to mention, it'll deter you from dealing with the real issue at hand: your parents' divorce.

So the next time someone says something insensitive, just ignore it. And if you can't ignore it, let them know that while you respect their opinion, they don't understand what you're going through. Leave it at that.

Remember: they feel uncomfortable too. They're trying to find the right words to say and unfortunately, that means sometimes saying the wrong ones. Cut them a break. It doesn't mean you have to sit and listen to them, but recognize whether their intentions are good and they're just going about things the wrong way. If their intentions aren't good, then stay far, far away.

Got any tips for handling rude or insensitive comments? Leave a note below or shoot me an email at

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