The dissolution of a marriage is a difficult event for any person to experience. However, a divorce can be even more challenging for children who are caught in the middle. Here’s how divorce can affect children and a few strategies to help parents in Texas protect the mental health of their children during a divorce.
The initial impact
Not surprisingly, studies have shown that children struggle the most during the first year following a divorce. When their parents first separate, children will experience anxiety, disbelief, distress and even anger. However, once a daily routine is established, most children will bounce back as they grow more comfortable in their “new normal.” Unfortunately, there is a small percentage of children who will experience long-term problems following their parents’ divorce.
Mental health and behavioral problems
Regardless of gender or age, nearly all children of divorced parents experience increased psychological problems. Recent studies have shown that anxiety and depression rates increase in children following a divorce. These mental health struggles will sometimes manifest externally in the form of behavioral problems or delinquency.
Parents should always keep the well-being of the children at the forefront and never put them in the middle of a divorce. Parents need to avoid letting conflict from their former relationship transfer over into their parenting roles. Hostility between parents, such as screaming or threats, has been linked to behavioral problems in kids.
Parents may feel the divorce is all about them. But a parental divorce can be absolutely devastating for the kids if their mental health needs are not taken into account. Those in Texas who are going through marital breakup may want to consider seeking the advice of a legal representative. An experienced attorney can provide guidance and help individuals get through this stressful experience.