No one can deny that divorce is emotionally taxing for all. To see a family, you happily built, fall to pieces is heartbreaking. But sometimes, it is necessary for a better future. Regardless of your reasons, the fact remains that the most innocent party in this whole matter is your children. Divorce affects children in numerous ways. It creates problems that not only affect their childhood but can have lasting impacts well into their adulthood.
According to Mount Pleasant divorce lawyer Ken Peck, it is important for parents to take special care of their children before, after and during the divorce process. Because of the potential psychological effects that may follow them throughout their lifetime, not only parents but also the lawyers involved in the case should be considerate of them. With that in mind, here’s how the divorce of parents can affect children at different ages.
If the divorce of parents happen before the child is of age 10, it may change their whole perception of a family. They may find it harder to form attachments and become increasingly insecure. This is especially true if parents used to be loving and caring before the divorce. Pre-adolescent children are more likely to go through immense emotional turmoil and confusion during and after the divorce.
Very young children mourn the loss of a loving family and want it back. It is very difficult for them to accept that they will no longer have both of their parents with them. They tend to become clingy and hold on to their parents, who symbolize security and safety.
They might also revert back to infantile behaviour. This could be because they think that since everything was fine when they were younger, doing so may help them get back to that old life. It could also be due to extreme stress and emotional turmoil. Such infantile behaviour could include wetting the bed, sucking their thumbs, crying excessively, etc.
Divorce of parents affects adolescent children differently than pre-adolescents. Their behaviour also varies differently. If the divorce of parents happens after the child of age 10, the child may be mature enough to understand what divorce means. While they may understand it logically, it doesn’t mean that accepting it is any less difficult.
Disengagement from home life
Rather than becoming clingy and wanting the old life back, adolescents tend to disengage from home life. They stop depending on their parents because they’ve proven themselves to be unreliable. They may start looking for meaningful relationships outside of the home, in their form of friends and romantic partners.
Adolescents children become more independent as compared to young children. The belief, “you can only rely on yourself” is very prominent in their life. They may isolate their parents from their lives. Not sharing their troubles and solving their own problems may seem preferable to having their divorced parents be involved in their life.
Although teenagers are big enough to understand and accept the divorce of their parents, it still wreaks havoc on their emotional well-being. Since the teenage years are already a time of significant changes in life and coming face to face with one’s vulnerabilities, not having your parents to support you makes everything worse.
Show Rebellious Behaviour
Teenagers tend to show rebellious behaviour. In order to retaliate against the parents, they become more violent and aggressive. Parents observe that their teenagers get angry and frustrated at every little thing. There is also a big chance for teenagers of divorced parents to join gangs too.
Resort to Drugs, Alcohol and Sex
Many teenagers are exposed to drugs, alcohol and sex in high school for the first time. They may become more vulnerable to these vices if their parents are divorced. They usually don’t do it simply as a show of rebellion. Instead, they may do it to find comfort and connection their parents failed to provide.
In conclusion, the divorce of parents affect childrens of all ages and creates long-lasting problems in their lives. Parents need to pay attention to this and make sure to come up with adequate coping mechanisms that will minimize these potential harmful effects.