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How divorce affects children

On Behalf of | Jan 3, 2022 | Divorce |

While divorce has many challenges for adult couples, it also impacts children in a variety of ways. How children react to their parents splitting up depends upon the age of the children, the situation surrounding the separation and many other factors.

Still, parents at any stage of a divorce can learn about potential impacts on their children from several sources.

Children react to divorce differently

A discussion from verywellfamily claims that the psychological effects on children of a divorce typically reach a peak in the first year. During this time, children might experience anger, distress, disbelief and anxiety. While some children struggle with the divorce for years, most tend to bounce back and get used to the new circumstances.

Some studies suggest that children of divorce face a higher risk of mental health issues and may act out with behavioral problems. They also could face additional stressors such as having financial uncertainty, moving to a new location and enrolling in a new school.

The emotional weight of divorce, in general, impacts different age groups in sometimes predictable ways. Young children might worry about abandonment, while those in grade school might blame themselves for the separation. Teenagers might have anger issues and blame one or both parents for the divorce.

Children cope better with help

Parents can help children adjust to divorce and perhaps limit negative impacts. A helpful co-parenting plan can give additional solace to children and make them feel as though they remain valued and loved.

Parents should not shy away from disciplining their children but should attempt to give consistent and understandable discipline when appropriate. Parents should monitor the mental well-being of children during and soon after a divorce to identify looming problems.