Monday, April 16, 2012

Outcomes of Divorce on Children Essay

Outcomes of Divorce on Children Essay

As sad as it is, today one out of every two marriages ends in divorce. What is even more frightening is that one of every two families that are getting divorced have children. In fact, there is little that is more distressing and hurtful for a child than the divorce of his/her parents. Before, the researches did not believe that divorce always causes pain in children. It was considered that divorce could have both positive and negative results. Though, today more and more scientists realize that divorce is simply a disaster for children, with a negative impact for them both at the point of the divorce and later (Huges, 2005).

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In my short paper I would like to present some of the effects that a divorce may have on a child. A child’s response to the divorce may be very different. It depends on the age of a child and his/her ability to have a handle on what is occurring. Certainly, younger children have a harder time dealing with the problem of parents’ separation. It is obvious that upon facing the divorce of the parents children start to ask such deliberate questions as “What if my parents will leave me?”, “Did I cause the divorce?”, “What is going to happen to me now?” (Amato, 1993, pp. 24-25).

The effects of divorce on the child that are the most traumatic are the changes in the routine a child is used to and the feelings of loneliness. After the divorce of the parents a child mourns the loss of the complete family and the presence of two parents (Amato, 1993, p. 23). Thus, most children are sad and depressed. For others the apprehension reaches the point when they feel that they are going to be forsaken by one or both parents (Eleoff, 2003).

After a divorce one of the parents may have to move, this also has a great negative effect on the child. Firstly because moving brings separation and secondly because in some cases a child may have to move as well and adjust to a new school, friends, and environment. For children the holidays and special days are essential. Hence, not being able to participate in the family holidays the way it was possible before may have a harmful effect on the child’s emotional state. Lastly, after a divorce it is natural that a parent who the child is staying with gets a new spouse. Without a shadow of doubt, to accommodate to a new person in the house is a painful and complicated process.

As it was made clear previously in the paper, children who go through a divorce often face issues with self esteem, emotional stability, life perception and self actualization. Though, nothing can be done and sometimes, no matter how much the parents love their child and want to save him/her from harm they have to separate. Thus, the most important thing for parents is to understand that divorce is not easy for them, but they are adults who know how to cope with hardships, while children do not (Amato, 1991, pp. 26-46). Therefore, when going through a divorce the parents need to make sure the divorce affects their children as little as possible (Karuppaswamy, Myers-Walls).

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