Individuals with divorced parents are at increased risk of experiencing psychological problems in adulthood (Amato & Sobolewski, 2001, p. 900). Growing up divorced has become an alternative developmental path for a substantial number of children in this country (Kalter, 1987, p. 587). These trends in family composition have major repercussions for the life course of children and their well-being. Studies have shown that adults with divorced parents, when compared with adults with continuously married parents, report to greater unhappiness, less satisfaction with life, a weaker sense of control, more symptoms of anxiety and depression, and a greater use of mental health services. Overall, most children of divorced parents have experienced dramatic declines in their economic circumstances, abandonment by one or both of their parents, the diminished capacity of both parents to attend meaningfully and constructively to their children’s needs, and diminished contact with many familiar or potential sources of psychological support.
This includes the relationship disturbances that are seen between parents and their children, how socially different their life becomes when divorce is present, and overall the future impact these children have on our society. During a divorce, each family member is affected in some way. The truth is most spouses as well as their children are not ready for the emotional and physical impact of divorce. Overall, divorce ends up disrupting the family life cycling process, adding intricacy to the development tasks already at hand. With the configuration of the family being altered, family members have to adjust to new situations and feelings.
Research evidence has shown that marital distress and conflict within a marriage causes a wide range of negative effects on the children of the feuding spouses. Many of the effects upon the children include depression, isolations, social inadequacy, mental health issues and academic status decreases. A study conducted in 1991suggests that out of 13000 people, the children that come from a divorced family tended to have poor academic performance and displayed more behavior problems. Some American couples suggest the divorce may be a way to solve their problems quickly and perhaps, more easily, rather than taking the time to work things out through counseling and other alternatives. When divorce occurs it does not just happen between those that are married, everyone in relation to the divorcee’s are effected.
By the time they turn 18, approximately fifty to sixty percent of all children in the United States have been affected by divorce (Miller, 1). Divorce-related problems (e.g., visitation, child support, parental custody) can be ongoing sources of stress to children, even up to eight years after the initial separation. Children can be robbed of a special experience and protection called 'Family'. They move on in their lives as individuals without the understanding of what familial security and bond is. Children look out into the world and wonder why it has dealt them a cruel card in life.
The Effect of Divorce on Children Divorce is a common transition in many families and has begun to become a natural standard of living in marriages (The Effects of Divorce on Children). Couples seek divorce for a variety of different reasons, the main goal being to find happiness that they are not finding in their current marriages. When a couple is going through divorce, sometimes they don’t notice the impact their separation has on their children. Children may feel very alone and turn to other things to help get them through this rough time in their life. While a few turn to something positive, many turn to negative activities.
When divorced, the children go through many emotional changes. "Children of divorce are more depressed and aggressive toward parents and teachers than are youngsters from intact families. They are much more likely to develop mental and emotional disorders later on in life" (Leo 2000). Children and teenagers have a hard tim... ... middle of paper ... ... Salem press, Inc 1999 pp. 382.
McLanahan and Gary Sandefur conclude that up to 40% of the increased risk of being a high school drop out is attributed to moving as a result of divorce (Chira 01E). The short term effects or divorce vary depending on the age and sex of most children. Boys and girls handle the break-ups with different emotions for example, some get angry, some feel sad, and some may experience feelings of rejection. Preschool age children, ages three to five, many times react with feelings of anger and sadness. Many of the preschool age children will regress after the initial shock of the separation.
Divorce can have both positive and negative affect on children’s life. According to statics, majority of parents divorce when the children are below eighteen. During this time, children are growing physically, socially, emotionally, morally ,and spiritually. Children don’t know what is going around them. Statics also say, half of the American children witnesses break up of their parents.
Today, all across the United States, there are more and more families splitting up because of divorce. Divorce is not a big deal anymore like it used to be thirty years ago, now couples are starting to get divorces in as little as three weeks after marriage. Divorce is a very heartbreaking process that hurts the couple, and the ones surrounding them. Divorce also comes with many downfalls but there are three main things to consider before divorce. “Psychological...Financial... Impact on children”(“3 Things to Consider...”).
“Studies show 35% of people who marry get a divorce, and 18% of those divorced are divorced multiple times” Clinton, Hart, & Ohlschlager, (2005). The rate of divorce of United States families continues to increase and is one of the most perplexing experiences for children. There are many reasons couples decide to end their ties to each other. Whatever the reasons, ending a relationship means that all individual that has ties to each other must adjust to a new way of living. The married couple may experience the stages of loss, such as, the experience of grief.