TheEffects of Divorce on Children
Divorceissue has hit a large number of countries, and the rate of marriagefamilies that end in divorce has also increased. However, the saddestthing majority of the parents have not realized when filling divorcesare the dire consequences and impacts the act will have on theirchildren. As defined by Oxford dictionary, divorce is referred to asa legal dissolution of marriage. There are various significantimpacts that divorce has on children of different age groups. Anumber of the most common consequences of divorce that can bementionedinclude the scenario where the majority of the children start toblame themselves for the act of divorce. They usually experience afeeling of uncertainty about the nature of life that were previouslyconcrete. To some extent, they develop certain behavioral issues.
Indeed,children do depend on their parents for a number of factors, whichinclude for comfort belonging, all kinds of support, strength oreven stability. Wheneverthe parents within the family of children of any age decides to getdivorced, there is always a big question that surrounds the act as towhether what is forever and the things that will be held subject tochanges.Eventhough a number of people in the recent days have made their waysright through divorce, there are incidences where many children havesuffered from the dire consequences of divorce in their livesespecially on their mind as well as the emotions.
Animpact that divorce has caused to children is the element of childrenfeeling that it is their fault that led to the separation of theirparents. It is true that many children do take full responsibilityand to be accountable for the act internally regardless how manytimes parents would take to explain the unfolded scenes that lead totheir divorce. The fear does arise to children where they make anassumption that it could be out of their misbehavior or maybe theywere bad at some point. Thismaybeassociatedwith the fact that most parents used to correlate the bad behaviorwith consequences when raising their children. The children,therefore, will relate the effects with the dangerous behaviors.
Divorcehas become one of the challenging as well as a confusing event forevery individual whose is involved. Immediately parents get divorced,their children do feel unsure about certain elements in their livesthat they have never questioned before. Consequently, children mayact out in a negative behavior as a result of their feelings oranger, sadness or the disappointment they get. A divorce has neverbeen a significant issue whenever there are no children. However,when children areinvolved,the divorce that their parents get into may have major effects ontheir lives (Joanne, Louise and Liz 183).
Theeffects of divorce on the children are influenced by the age. Ifa child is younger, for example, the divorce of their parents willaffect him or her more than a child who is in preteens to the age ofteenage years.Foryoung children who caught up within the scenario may experience afeeling of choosing a side or rather to be the root cause of theirparents getting divorced as mentioned earlier.It is, therefore, very vital to understand in depth the various waysin which divorce may affect children of a given family in thesociety.
Asdivorce becomes an intense experience for both children as well asparents, it can often lead to poor or lack of parenting skills thatwill eventually affect children for their future lives. Indeed,children should not develop a feeling of taking side with the parentsbut rather feel close with both the parents and as well develop atight and strong relationship with both the parents. Nevertheless,there are certain incidents where children may feel to choose a sideto cling on though as Elizabeth and Raelynn (1235) states, “it isimportant to improve parenting post-divorce by enhancinginterpersonal and emotional connections in a parent-childrelationship.”An initiative has been made through the Mindful Parenting Program,which is designed to assist both the parents and their childreninteract and connect.
HelpingChildren involved in a Divorce in schools
Theoccurrence of divorce is uncertain as it can happen at any time. Thedivorces that frequently occur are not only experienced duringsummer, a time when children are out of school. Children at a tenderage are usually prone to have a greater effect of their parents’divorce. The United States Census Bureau conducted in the year 2000shows that every year, more than one million children do experienceparental divorce. Consequently, Connolly and Green (3) in theirarticle states that by age 18, to approximate of 40% of the totalpercentage of children experienced divorce cases. Their empiricalresearch clearly shows that children whose parents get divorced areexperiencing an increased rate of the development of psychological,social, behavioral as well as academic related problems.
Childrendo spend much time in school, approximately eight (8) hours in a dayfor fivedays a week, nine months of a year.Itis, therefore, important that teachers and other expert counselors toidentify the affected children who are going through the scene anddevelop techniques of helping them after they have understood howthey are acting towards the act.Such children might feel being abandoned and loose the close bondthat is created between parents and children thus may lead toreactions and actions that are never intended to happen. The school,therefore, becomes a familiar setting for children and can providethe affected children with the natural support network of teachers aswell as classmates (Connolly and Green 11).
Theschool setup should offer children experiencing divorce within theirfamilies with learning and social environment that is conducive wherethe victims would feel comfortable to interact freely with theirteachers, as well as counselors. However, teachers have ratedchildren from the divorced families higher on certain factors such asthe inability to reflect, heightened anxiety surrounding academicfailure, inattention as well as irrelevant talk. Such childrengenerallyattend less school, do less or never do homework but take more timewatching television and have a less parental guide in completingschoolwork assignments. Thisisthe time teachers and school counselors should put more efforts tohelp children cope with their feelings and adjust living with thedivorce as they maintain a ladder of high school performance on theirgrades.
Theevidence-based practice which should be adopted by teachers andcounselors is a movement that is within the line of psychology andeducation purely to identify the problem, disseminate and to promotethe use of practices with the demonstrated empirical support to theaffected children. The practice, therefore, requires professionalsequipped withthe knowledgeto learn about the students and the interventions and hope to do anevaluation of the state and find better solutions. Achild should be ready to develop a trusted relationship with theschool counselors and freely speak of what they feel about theirparent’s divorce and know that they will never be judged or scaredbased on their status.
AnOverview of the effects on both parents versus single-parent
Wheneverfamilies breakup, issues on who should have the primary custody ofthe children and whoto be seeing children have emerged. A number of the divorce that hasoccurred has become very nasty based on the severe consequences orthe effects they pose to the children. Indeed, the parents have notto the realization that they don’thurt themselves but rather hurting their children. As Brown (44-45)denotes, the legal disputes that typically occur over child’swellbeing usually cause high impacts on children lives. One party mayfeel that the other parent should have no attachment with the kid,demanding to make an oath to sign their rights away and become adistant memory.
Therehas been a debate that questions whether children that remain closerand contact with the non-resident parent especially typical fathersisassociatedwith positive outcome for the children. However, the findingsindicate that the children who retain close ties with non-residentfathers who offer full support to a child usually do better (Joanne,Louise and Liz 181). The bond between a child and the parents shouldbe kept intact even if they do not see one another on a daily basis.The relationship can only be achieved when both parents have a strongbond with each other rather than conflicting issues. However, even ifconflicts may arise as well as hard feeling to both parents, theyshould never show it to the child for his or her benefit since allthe suffering is felt by the affected child.
Incases where the reporting parent is less strain and has fewerconcerns about the parenting capacity of the other parent, it isevident that a child may adjust positively. The key focus of apost-divorce scenario should be built on maintaining the feelings ofa child and the basic needs he or she may require in life. The childadjustment measure preferred as SDQ should form the basic as it formsa 25 item scale with five sub-scales. These include the emotionalsymptoms, problems associated with the conducts, the peer problems,and pro-social behavior. The sub-scales reflect higher problems thatrelate to actions. The children who arevictimizedfrom divorce should never take side with their parents but ratherpresent their problems based on their feelings on the state. If bothparents develop a strong bond with their children, then the kids willbe at ease to adapt or cope with the divorce and move on with life ina normal way.
Asimilar suggestion on the study made by Divorce AdjustmentInventory-Revised (DAI-R) that measure a child’s adjustment beforeand after divorce indicates both what parents see and feel from thechild as well as the feelings of a child.It is clearly indicated that a strong parent-child relationship thatbonds both parents is most effective to help the child curb thesituation as opposed to vice versa (Brown, Saylor and Sekhon 64).Bonnie and Mackey (139) also suggest that some parts of the UnitedStates, the fathers are regarded as optional, while other areas theyare seen to be an essential part of the development of theirchildren.
It is also evident that the biological and the residential socialfathers are regarded to have improved their children’s chances ofcompleting high schools. If there is a bond in both parents,definitely a child will develop a strong bond even if both parentsare not living together as a family. If efforts are made by bothparents towards helping the child, a child will eventually feel asense of belonging thus motivates him or her towards achieving theset goals in life. However, even though emphasis is made thatfathers’ assistance do help their children to accomplish theirgoals, the initiative made by both parent serves best rather thansingle parent. Children who receive full support from both parentsbuild their emotions as well as mental and bring the child moreclosely to the parents and would recover from the divorce.
Fordand Kickham (848) points out that divorce usually cause majority ofchildren to miss out parental roles that usually forms the basicground as role model, parents proving their children with fullsupport in all kind as well as correcting children whenever they gowrong in life. Most cases, fathers are always left within that marginthus the incident can make a child feel unimportant and deserted. Itis also evident that girls and boys have their own ways of expressingtheir emotions toward divorce. The statistics shows that the maleindividuals tend to be more violent as well as rebellious while onthe other hand, the female individuals tend to be more sexuallyactive at a tender age as compared to those who are raised in intactfamilies.
Consequently,children of divorce usually develop a negative perception on theirown future marriage based on the past divorce experience of theirparents. Children go an extent of losing marital trust in theirspouse, thus make them feel demoralized with marriage. They do losetrust in their spouse based on the dishonesty seen with parents intheir marriage. Such children have no ideas on what build up a goodfamily and thus whenever they are faced with any challenge they willbe prone to make quick solutions that can ruin their marriage andends up in divorce too (Weissbourd 27).
TheCatholic Church also has set strict guidelines on divorce. Thedoctrine of the church considers marriage bond as a sacred bond,which should be based on life-long love, fidelity as well as family.It is a bond on earth and a spiritual bond that only God binds, andit should not be broken using any temporal laws. Based on the faith,individuals who divorce are free to receive the sacraments unless oneis remarried without the Decree of Invalidity that is, when theformer spouse is still alive, there are related issues and are notallowed to receive the Holy Communion too as the act is not acceptedwithin the Christian doctrine.
Withthe above-mentioned stand, the Catholic Church does not permitdivorce for valid marriages bound within the church. Indeed, anyvalid sacramental marriage is impossible to dissolve thus makingdivorce not to be accepted within a church setup. The Christianreference point, which is Bible, states that the two become one fleshin a union that is joined by God (Mark 10:8) as Christ make anillustration about divorce in church setup quoting “Therefore whatGod has joined, no one can separate” (Mark 10:9). Marriage,therefore, that meets the requirement of sacrament, the CatholicChurch states that divorce is not possible.
However,whenever an individual wants to terminate the marriage, the Catholicwill never be accounted within the annulment process and heldresponsibly. TheChurch affirms that marriage directly parallels our relationship withGod as He is always faithful to uphold His relationship with us thusindividuals who get into marriage tie are, therefore, called to holdunto faithfulness that He has for us.
Anumber of people may affirm that divorce is usually different, andevery child who is affected may act differently too. Even if childrenwho are affected might not show that they are distress, theirdisgrace is always felt by themselves as none of them would long toexperience the pain and suffering that result from divorce. Thesociety has encountered dire consequences that happen as a result ofdivorce. Itis, therefore, high time each an individual’s divorced people totake an initiative to understand the feelings their children and helpthem build a healthy parent-child relationship for children to have abetter future life that can be admirable by others.When proper guidance, as well as counsel, is not done, the majorityof them may lead fromthe examplesthey face in their lives. An understanding is, therefore, forms thekey role that the society should focus on in order to help childreninvolved in a divorce to grow up with a positive mind of making achange in life. The young age children of about five to seven yearsare usually confused and are significantly affected by their parents’separation (divorce). Most cases, they do fear that theymay be abandoned by their parents,and this cause a great anxiety to them. The separation of suchchildren seems to be so dire as there are feelings attached to theact that their needs would not bemetas personal bond wound not be met too.
Theparents should also take the initiative to instill change for thesake of their children. The effects of divorce may not be experiencedwhen both parents react positively after divorce. The society shouldnever portray to the public that children of divorce are likely toexperience problems based onthe feelingthey do develop that makes them uncomfortable. Indeeda number of them aged eighteen to thirty-five years, a quarter of thetotal have managed to overcome their divorce state and pass throughlearning institutions successful and become great people in thesociety. The victim children can emerge to be successful based onthe lessonsthey learned from the divorce and the close bond that their parentsmay have even after their divorce. It is through the child that thetwo parents arebondedtherefore, they should work ways of ensuring that the needs of theirchildren are met.
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