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How to Counter the Effect of Divorce on Children

Divorce will always have an impact on children, even when it goes as smoothly as possible. While a divorce may be inevitable, there are steps parents can take to mitigate the consequences on children of a family splitting up.

Short-Term Effects of Divorce

When a child is informed of divorce, there are many negative effects that may take place. Children may feel disbelief, shock, anger and anxiety.

In addition, there are differences in the way children of different ages respond to divorce. According to an article published by Divorce Magazine, divorce can have the effect of causing young children to regress and become more dependent while making adolescents more rebellious and independent from their families.

The Long-Term Effects of Divorce

Fortunately, there is good news about the way in which divorce affects children, as many studies show that children recover well from divorce in the long-term. Experts say that by the end of the second year, many issues like anxiety and anger will disappear in most children. Divorce has not been shown to permanently hinder a child’s emotional development or academic achievement.

Interestingly, studies show that if parents fought frequently in front of the children while married, children adjust better to the divorce than if children did not see marital discord until the divorce process.  There are however, some limited studies that report that adults who come from a broken home experience depression and relationship problems at higher rates than the rest of the population.

Parenting Tips for Children of Divorce

Experts suggest that certain steps can be taken to minimize the effects of divorce.

  • Parents should limit discord associated with the divorce process.
  • Parents should limit the child’s exposure to the divorce process, especially if it is contentious.
  • The primary parent of the child should be well functioning. Experts recommend that if there is a maladjusted parent, that he or she get professional help or limit visitations with the child.
  • Parents should be able to openly discuss the divorce and answer any questions the child may have.
  • Parents should try to create predictability and rituals post-divorce. This will help children feel more secure.

Contract a Katy, Texas Family Law Attorney

One of the most effective ways to make a divorce go as smoothly as possible is to retain an experienced attorney as early as possible in the process. To schedule a consultation with Katy, Texas divorce lawyer Frank J. Vendt, call our office today at (832) 263-6770 or contact us online.

1 http://www.divorcemag.com/articles/effects-of-divorce-on-children

2 https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/is-divorce-bad-for-children/