06 May 3 Interesting Articles on How Divorce Affects Children
The effects of divorce on children remain one of the largest concerns of divorcing parents. Traditionally, raising children with both parents in the home (married) was believed to produce the best outcomes for well-adjusted kids. Today, “traditional” households are no longer the majority and are quickly becoming a minority. With high divorce statistics, many parents wonder how profound the impact of their divorce will be on their kids. The following articles provide some very interesting suggestions about how divorce affects children down the road.
Divorce and Kids: 5 Ways Divorce Benefits Kids
The Huffington Post challenges the widespread belief that “staying together for the kids” is best for the family. In this article, they have proven that divorce is actual beneficial for children for several reasons.
One of the primary reasons for this is related to parental happiness. If married parents are miserable with one another and in their relationship, they’re not likely to be happy. Parental satisfaction plays a large role in the child’s happiness and adjustment.
Secondly, increased tension and anxiety within the home and parental relationships is a stressor on the children. Often this pressure is greatly reduced as the result of a parental split. The behaviors of the children will greatly improve when they are not subjected to a stressful situation.
Children are very observant and often learn by mirroring the behaviors of their parents. Staying together for the sake of the kids teaches your children that you don’t feel you deserve a happy, supportive and satisfying relationship. They gain the impression that it’s ok to settle for an unhappy marriage if kids are involved. This isn’t something that anyone would want for their children. Be honest with yourself, and honest with your children, don’t settle for unhappiness.
Divorce often allows for more in-depth relationships with both parents. Shared parenting arrangements encourage individual time with both mom and dad. This allows the child to have focused time with both parents, as opposed to spending more time with one or the other. Shared parenting arrangements often encourage a stronger parent/child relationship.
Finally, divorce provides the opportunity for your children to see you happy again. Whether or not you develop a new relationship down the road, your children will benefit from seeing you as a happy, independent individual.
The Positive Effects of Divorce on Children
Wikivorce further elaborates on the concept that divorce may not be so bad for kids after all. When considering violent and abusive relationships, separation and divorce is vital to the safety of all parties involved. Further, children who witness violence may develop unhealthy communication patterns as adults. Separation or divorce in these cases is critical to prevent children from living in an environment where they continue to see the lack of respect, lack of trust and violence.
Sometimes, divorce is often a relief to the kids. Many parents worry the children will be heartbroken at the news of their parents’ divorce. While this may apply to some, others are relieved that the divorce will end the arguing, fear, and unhappiness that plagues an unhealthy marriage.
Parenting is often compromised in the setting of an unhappy marriage. Both parents are so focused on making the marriage work; they fail to pay attention to their children and their parenting skills. Once the marriage splits, the parents are again able to devote more time and attention to their kids and their parenting skills.
Positive Outcomes of Divorce: A Multi-Method Study
This study, completed at the University of Central Florida, evaluated the outcomes of children who were the product of divorce. There is a common misconception that divorce leaves a negative impact on children involved emotionally, educationally and relationally. This misconception leads many parents to remain in unhealthy relationships for the sake of the kids. Surprisingly, this research study found the opposite to be true. In a study of 233 children, a Ph.D. student at the University of Central Florida found that many children experience positive outcomes following the divorce. However, positive results were related to a host of other factors; family structure, child’s gender, socioeconomic status as well as the level of parental conflict.
Divorce represents a life-changing experience for the entire family. Children will undergo transitions like shared parenting or moving to a new house. Regardless of these changes, there are many positive outcomes to be had as a result of divorce. The happiness of the parents plays an enormous role in the happiness of their children. Seeing parents in supportive, trusting relationships leads children to seek those types of relationships in their lives. And, parents who no longer have to focus on an unhealthy marriage have more time to build relationships with and parent their children. “Staying together for the kids,” is no longer the ideal situation. Showing children the importance of a happy, trusting relationship is far more valuable.