Easing the stress that divorce has on children

Divorce is a stressful time for everyone involved and this especially applies to any children involved. It can have long-reaching effects on a child, even into adulthood. With roughly half of UK marriages ending in divorce, there are many children, both younger children and teenagers, going through the trauma that this can bring.

Whatever age they are, a child can feel very lonely during the period leading up to, and after the divorce. Some children, especially the older ones, feel that it is somehow their fault that their parents are splitting up. A child might think that if they had behaved better, got better grades at school or maybe not argued with their parents, then the divorce would not be happening.

This is not the case. The divorce is strictly between the parents and it is their issues, whatever they may be, that are the problem. This is why it is important for the parents to let their children know exactly what is happening and that they are not in any way to blame.

A child coping with their parents’ divorce should not feel alone. If they cannot talk to their parents then they should talk to friends, a trusted relative or another adult such as a teacher. Children will be going through all sorts of emotions at this time. They may feel guilty, angry, stressed, depressed and even relieved.

If there has been a lot of tension or arguing in the family home then the child will be relieved that this is coming to an end. It is important for the child to try and not take sides as well. This may not be easy, especially if one of the parents has obviously behaved badly, but the child must remember that their parents still love them, whatever their feelings for each other.