Parents who are in the midst of a divorce have to think about their children. There are many impacts that parents divorcing can have on them, but staying together just for their sake might also have some negative effects. Once you decide that divorce is inevitable, you have to determine what you’re going to do to help them meet the challenges.
A paper published in World Psychiatry notes that most children who go through a divorce with their parents won’t have negative impacts that are long-lasting. The paper further noted that demographic information sometimes plays a part in whether children are affected. For example, Hispanic and black children aren’t as likely to suffer as many negative impacts as white children.
Social activity changes
Children might withdraw from their social circles due to the big changes that are going on at home. They may also drop activities that were once important to them. Sometimes, this comes out of necessity. Their parents might not be able to afford those activities since the divorce. They may have had to move away because of the split. Encouraging them to remain in contact with friends and keep up with favorite activities is beneficial.
Trouble in school
The changes they are going through can make it harder for them to keep up in school. They likely aren’t doing this on purpose. Instead, it is more that they just can’t focus and are more distracted by the divorce. Talking to their teachers may help them to find ways to assist your children with their academic career.
Some children who have gone through their parents’ divorce will begin to feel guilty or angry. This can lead to destructive behavior, sometimes against themselves. It might involve using drugs, depending on alcohol, smoking cigarettes and other similar behaviors. Parents who notice their children starting to do any of these should try to get them professional help to work through the underlying issues that can lead to these behaviors.
Lack of trust in relationships
There are some divorces that are so contentious that they put the children in a position of not being able to trust relationships. They associate serious relationships with complications and strife. A child who goes through a divorce with their parents is more likely to go through one themselves.
Once the divorce is in the works, you should attempt to work out the parenting plan quickly. This benefits the children because they can settle into the new way of life faster, which is likely to reduce their stress.