In recent history divorce has become less and less of a taboo in America and many places around the world. With that option being available to couples we have seen divorce rates steadily rise, for the most part, over the last few decades. With the growing popularity of divorce, it’s important to consider how it affects our children. Some people claim that it can have a lasting impact on someone for life, others say it can be overcome.
“Divorce Can Be Overcome” Articles:
Is Divorce Bad for Children?
This article claims that according to studies they found, divorce really has little impact on MOST children. Many grow up to be well adjusted and rarely suffer serious consequences early on in life. One study it looked at found that children may suffer from some side effects like anger, anxiety, and depression, but that they tend to go away within a two year time span. Another study suggested children who are exposed to conflict prior to the divorce often adjust even better when it happens as they are not as surprised, whereas a sudden divorce they couldn’t have seen coming may shock them, and some may even see the divorce as relief because of the conflict they saw. This article seemed trustworthy just because of how they sited studies as evidence for everything they said, every bit of it was backed up with evidence collected by other, probably more professional, researchers.
Divorce Not Always Bad for Kids
This article looked specifically at studies who found that children of a bad marriage often ended up better off if their parents got divorced. Over the course of about 20 years or so, parents, and children of the parents, were interviewed at different ages. Parents were initially asked questions that helped to understand how much conflict was happening in their marriage. A later surveyed asked those parents new questions and tried to figure out if a divorce had occurred. A few years later the children, who would now be adults, were again surveyed and asked about how their current relationships had been faring. The surveys found that children who grew up in high conflict households usually turned out better if their parents had opted to get a divorce. In contrast to this, a happy marriage didn’t seem to have any impact on whether or not the children had positive relationships themselves later in life.
“Divorce Has A Lasting Impact” articles:
A divorce can never be good for children no matter how amicable it is, says study
This study examined how children are affected within 3 different types of divorce; a “healthy one” in which the parents still talked to each other and rarely fought, parents who still payed childcare but did not talk, and divorces where one parent was completely gone. Each group was interviewed as children and adults, and each one gave very similar answers, which the article claims “debunks” the idea that divorces can be good. According to the study, the children of a healthy divorce often had less behavioral issues, but still suffered academically, with self esteem, and with drugs and alcohol. In fact the article claims that their grades were even worse than children who were missing a parent. The article quotes professional opinions on divorce, and it sites a study done by professionals, these two things really lend to its credibility in my opinion.
How Could Divorce Affect My Kids?
This is another article that claims children will experience several of the same issues as the above article. Academic failure, drugs and alcohol use, delinquency, etc., as well as psychological and emotional issues lasting later into life. One study, done by Judith Wallerstein, interviewed several children multiple times between the 1970’s and the 1990’s. She expected children to recover but instead her findings revealed that many of the participants suffered from problems as adults, especially when moving into romantic relationships. She says that anxiety causes people to make poor decisions, giving up when problems occur, or just avoiding relationships altogether. More problems can be brought on if and when one parent finds a new spouse, introducing step-family which can act as more competition for attention from the original parent and can sometimes even lead to further separation between the child and the parent.
I have to take the side of the argument saying divorce is not a serious issue for children. It’s obvious that there is a risk for children to experience negative side effects to divorce, but several studies have found it to be fairly uncommon, and some studies even found divorce to be the better choice for your children’s sake, in the case of an unhealthy marriage. I think it’s really a very situational issue, some children may be hurt and some may recover, I think it goes beyond just the issue of divorce, and is likely impacted by the child’s own natural tendency toward the issues that are claimed to be caused by divorce. I know from personal experience that I turned out alright despite my parents divorce, but I also know people who had the opposite outcome. Like I said, it really depends on how prone the child naturally was to emotional scarring.