Handling Children and Divorce
A marriage breaking up can be an upsetting situation. It doesn’t matter if the couple is happy about the break up or not, it is an end to a relationship. Then there is the concept of children and divorce. A child of any age can be upset by their parent’s divorce. They have a lot of emotions and thoughts to consider.
Parents know they can’t just stay in an unhappy marriage or a marriage that is not working because it is best for the children. They find it better to live separate lives as best for everyone because in the long run they will all be better off. When a couple decides to break up and they have children, it is better to sit together and discuss the issue with them. It is best to do this as a family. Let them know it is a decision they made and it is not the children’s fault. Tell them and show them that they are loved. Children get upset and have long term traumas of such emotional upheavals thus, it is best not to get into ugly arguments and situations in front of the children. For the children, parents are an integral part of their lives and as far as possible, try to let them know that they will be there for them.
Divorce does not have to be just an ending. Children and divorce will lead to starting a new life just as their parents do. Children should not be put in the middle. It is important to not play with the child’s emotions or pit them against the other parent. This will make it worse for the child in the long run. It will also lead to a lot of upsetting moments for everyone. Parents are not working together to keep the marriage together and have decided that they won’t be doing this. Nevertheless, they do need to work at the divorce and at helping their children cope.
Parents should continue to communicate with their children and tell them they love them. They should also be made to feel special because they are special to their parents. When dealing with children and divorce each child needs to be handled according to their age as well as what the parents feel the child can handle. A younger child can have trouble sleeping, extreme emotions and have separation fears. Older children will try to find ways to work out a way to get their parents together again, feel anger, be depressed, pit parents against one another and develop relationship anxiety. If you are unable to handle your children’s reaction, it may be better to let a relative, friend or even a psychologist intervene and assist as needed. Sometimes, just letting time pass can help heal the wounds of separation.
Talk to the child and listen to them. They might have concerns that the parent doesn’t even realize. Helping the child means the child must be first and helping them is vital.