Effects of Divorce on Children
In the contemporary world, divorce is a common thing that most couples engage in following marriages that are not working. As marriage dissolves, divorce is the only option for some parents while others ask themselves whether they should stay together for the kids’ sake. Nonetheless, many parents worry whether the future life would hold or they would have to subject their children to unnecessary pain and suffering. Most children who belong to families who have broken up get stressed and even fail in their exams. They might also be left traumatized since they will lack fatherly or motherly love as most of them get bullied by their colleagues while in school. Depending on the children, divorce is stressful amongst all children, but the rate of rebounding differs from one to the other.
Psychological effects are the primary problem that these children are likely to go through, and support from the parents can reduce the effects the children have, as postulated by Brand et al. (270). After divorce, the first year for children is the toughest because kids experience disbelief, distress, anxiety, and anger. Depending on the arrangement, some of these kids can bounce back fast, as others can take time. The emotional impact of divorce on the failure is turmoil and children; it is even scary, exasperating, and confusing. Young children find it hard to comprehend why they have to go between two homes, and their fear lies in the future that if their parents stop loving each other, they can also stop loving them someday.
Divorce causes children to lose contact with their parents, majorly their fathers. The bond of child-parent is affected when the connections between them are decreased, and in many instances, the children would feel less close to their fathers, specifically after a divorce. The high level of stress caused by single parenting affects the custodial parent, and these are mothers in most cases. After divorce, research reveals how less affectionate and supportive mothers can be when handling children and the level of discipline keeps depreciating, unlike when both parents are taking the child. The hardest part of the divorce is not the separation part, but the stressors accompanying the divorce make the situation difficult. It is often accompanied by moving to new homes, changing the school, and adapting to the life of single parenting.
Again, divorce risks the high chances of making children have mental problems, especially in children and adolescents. Divorced parents cause mental problems to their children regardless of culture, age, or gender. It triggers an adjustment disorder, and children end up getting depression and anxiety. Again, behavioral challenges amongst the children are observed since these families experience an externalizing challenge like delinquency, conduct disorder, and impulse behavior compared to the kids raised by both parents. High chances exist for the children from divorced parents to engage in peer conflict because they have been witnessing such experience while being raised in conflicting families before their parents divorced.
Also, divorce affected academic performance, and compared to other kids, and they perform dismally. It takes some time for some of the children to come to terms with the divorce, which causes them to perform miserably in their academics. Further, these children are likely to engage in risky behaviors like engaging in early sex or substance use at the adolescent stage. They end up drinking alcohol earlier than their counterparts, guided by their parents, and shown the other side of the coin whenever they find themselves engaging in unethical behaviors.
Despite the immense effects of divorce, some mechanisms are likely used to help the kids adjust. For people whose parents divorced, there are high rates for them to divorce too at their adult age. Therefore, understanding how to adjust to divorce is essential for parents to help their children have successful parenting in the future. Co-parenting peacefully is one way that can be adapted to help the children have a better life by reducing their distress (Herrero, Marta, Ana Martínez-Pampliega, and Irati, 121). Also, it is advised not to put kids in the middle to decide on the parent to choose because it is the best way to indicate that their other parent is not essential and depression and anxiety are likely to catch them.
Mudau, Mulaudzi, and Ncube explained that children could adjust to divorce when they divorced and maintained their healthy relationships without conflicts and positive communication. When this is practiced, children can adapt to divorce easily and help instill self-esteem in them that will make them perform better in schools. Also, using consistent discipline is advised, and both parents can come up with rules that their children can use, and there is a need to come up with consequences where applicable. During the adolescent stage, close monitoring of the children by both parents is encouraged. It reduces the possibilities of substance use and engagement in unethical behaviors. Empowering the children is another healthy way of bringing up the children in the right way. It enables them to gain coping skills and helps them feel safe even though their parents parted ways.
Brand, Jennie E., et al. “Why does parental divorce lower children’s educational attainment? A causal mediation analysis.” Sociological Science 6 (2019): 264-292.
Herrero, Marta, Ana Martínez-Pampliega, and Irati Alvarez. “Family communication, adaptation to divorce and children’s maladjustment: The moderating role of co-parenting.” Journal of Family Communication 20.2 (2020): 114-128.
Mudau, T. J., L. M. Mulaudzi, and D. Ncube. “The impact of divorce on teenagers social behavior at Hamangilasi village in Limpopo, South Africa.” Gender & Behaviour 16.2 (2018):
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