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Divorce

The Emotional Impact Parents Splitting Up Can Have on Families

Adryenn Ashley

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Divorce and separation are never easy things to handle. And if you have kids with your spouse or partner, splitting up will affect them, too. Divorce has a lasting impact on kids of all ages, so it’s important to be aware of the potential consequences before you sign the papers.

Divorce is stressful for kids

You might think your kids aren’t aware of your issues with your spouse, but they probably know that something is wrong, even if you haven’t told them about the divorce yet. Children are observant, especially when it comes to their parents. And since your kids are so dependent on you and your spouse, a separation will shake up their world and stress them out – no matter how amicable the divorce is. Most children feel insecure and sad when their parents split up, and some even blame themselves for the divorce.

Young children and teenagers react differently

Young children often become more fearful and dependent when their parents split up. They know that something terrible is happening, but they don’t fully understand it. Some children even go through a phase of developmental regression when their parents separate.

Teenagers, on the other hand, typically try to protect themselves from the pain of their parents’ divorce by becoming more independent. This pain can lead to rebellious behavior and less closeness with the rest of the family.

Some – but not all – kids have lasting psychological issues after divorce

Most kids can bounce back from their parents’ divorce with few issues, no matter how old they were when it happened. If the parents’ relationship was abusive, or if they fought frequently, a divorce can even improve their kids’ well-being.

Some children, though, have a hard time recovering from their parents’ separation. They might develop anxiety problems or go through a period of depression. Later in life, some of these children might have problems forming stable relationships of their own. If you think your kids might be experiencing long-term effects from your divorce, it’s best to talk to the experts and get your kids counseling, if necessary.

Divorce is tough for parents, too

If you’re a parent who is considering or going through a divorce, you know that splitting up is no walk in the park for you, either. You might be feeling guilty for splitting up with your spouse instead of trying to make things better. If you’re like most parents, you’re probably also worried about how this will affect your kids in the future. It’s true that divorce is very rarely an ideal outcome for anyone. However, in the long run, it may be better to get divorced than to model an unhappy or abusive relationship for your kids.

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Divorce

#1 Complaint of Failed Relationships

Adryenn Ashley

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woman wearing white shirt beside man wearing grey shirt and necktie

When you think of divorce or a break-up what is the first thing you think couples say?

  • Money disagreements?
  • Not enough sex?
  • Just not in love anymore?
  • My partner bored me?
  • We don’t have anything in common?
  • Partners who lie or cheat?

While all of these answers may be partially true but what we have found to be the real underlying problem is that people do not feel heard, understood, and valued and most often this shows up as criticism from your partner.

Criticism and all the hurt feeling that go with it can suck the life out of your relationship and eventually kill the relationship. Criticism is a sneaky way of ruining a loving relationship. It is different that cheating or lying because criticism is often excused as harmless bickering or nagging and is widely accepted by people as “just a normal part of life”.

Other words and actions for criticism: teasing, nagging, passive aggressive behavior, complaining about your partner to others.

Humans have the innate need to feel love and accepted. Criticism is not acceptance!

Think back to when you were fist in love and how that felt. You did not notice all the faults of your partner. Or if you did you decided you loved them anyway and would just ignore it. Now several years later, you notice every little thing your partner does wrong or doesn’t do and you make sure that you tell them either with words or actions that you do not like it.

Criticism let’s your partner know that you do not accept them for how they are and that you are not happy with the way things are going. This does not foster feelings of love and caring. In fact, criticizing your partner will drive a deep wedge between you causing the partner being criticized to disengage from the relationship and this is where the major trouble happens.

The criticism trap causes couples to start looking for other ways to feel fulfilled and successful. They may begin to spend more time with friends seeking happiness, companionship, belonging, and acceptance. It may also cause some people to become workaholics. They may even begin new hobbies or start to play sports. Unfortunately, this may also lead to infidelity and divorce.

If criticism is not corrected and allowed to happen the love and joy will exit the relationship leaving room for hate, disgust, and distance between partners.

There is hope! If you are in this type of relationship there are several things you can do to bring love back to life.

Simply… Just stop the criticism!

Trust me when I say I understand this may be harder than you think. I grew up in a home where criticism was a normal every conversation experience. I do not blame any of my family for this, as it was “just the way life was back then”. But I knew that I did not want to live my life in a negative environment and I wanted love. I often found myself critical of something my husband did or did not do and I would just “bug him” about it. Little did I know after years of doing it that I hurt him every time I did this. He finally told me how it made him feel. While pondering this event it occurred to me that others are doing the same thing. This will destroy your marriage if you do not stop.

Some simple steps to help you.
#1- Give appreciation and praise- look for the good things your spouse does and then say thank you!
#2- In the Disney movie Bambi: Thumper’s mother said it best… “If you can’t say something nice. Don’t say anything at all”.
#3- Don’t forget to say I love you and spend time together!

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