Studies tell us that divorce is one of the most difficult life events for children and adults alike. Even under the very best of circumstances, research shows it takes a significant emotional toll on everyone involved, often leading to long-term psychological effects that require a healthy support system in order to successfully cope.
Among the countless stressors that often arise throughout the course of a divorce, experts tell us there are certain aspects of the experience that have a particularly strong impact. Children can be especially susceptible, as they experience many of the same painful challenges adults do, often with heightened emotional responses.
Here are some of the biggest stressors of divorce and the struggles they present for children and their parents:
#1: Parental Tension and Conflict
Research shows that divorce tends to be a better option when it reduces the amount of conflict between parents. When tension and conflict remain high between parents after the marriage ends, it often places severe emotional strain on the children in the family, not to mention on the parents themselves. Cooperation between parents can go a long way when it comes to making the divorce easier for children in both the short term and long term.
#2: Money Troubles
Chances are, one or both parents will experience financial strain on some level when the marriage ends. Even if the issue is not a lack of funds, there is still much to be settled, including whether spousal support will be ordered and how property and assets will be divided. If children witness conflict over money, it can add further emotional distress.
#3: Loss of Important Relationships
Children can be seriously affected by changes to the established, vital relationships in their lives. In the wake of a divorce, children often experience a reduction in contact with a non-residential parent, and they may lose touch with friends and family members who were once important parts of their support system and everyday routines. Multiple factors threaten these existing relationship bonds, including geographical distance, limited parenting time, and an overall lack of healthy quality time.
#4: New Partners or Stepparents
The introduction of new adults, such as the parents’ new romantic partners or stepparents, has the ability to cause a great deal of stress for children. Not only do the children have to adjust to this new presence, but they may also be exposed to one parent’s jealousy or anger over the other parent’s relationship. Studies show that stress is intensified when the children are young adolescents or when the new partners emerge very quickly after the divorce.
Contact a Douglas County Family Law Attorney
While the number and the intensity of challenges that divorcing families face are great, the good news is that research shows that children have an impressive capacity for resilience and personal growth following the end of their parents’ marriage if they have the support they need. A skilled Denver divorce lawyer has the resources and knowledge you need to help you protect your children’s best interests. Call for a confidential consultation at Pesch Law Office PC today.