Yes, there is ample evidence to suggest that separating or ending a marriage might be the right choice. If harm is being inflicted at home in a marriage, then separation is necessary. You’ll find articles suggesting that divorce does not hurt a child and those that say it does hurt a child but the truth is almost always in the middle, isn’t it? Divorce hurts a child to some extent–how could it be argued otherwise? The choices we make during divorce & separation proceedings are important and very meaningful.
Parents’ separation is a big deal for children. Emotional stability is important whether parents are breaking up or not. It is emotional stability that will get the child through. Parents might need an education in offering stability because we’ve got to do our best with each challenge that arises.
You might be going through a lot but there are ways to lessen the load for your child. Research shows us that communicating with the child through the ordeal of divorce or separation is pertinent. The age of the child will help a parent understand how to assess their reactions. It must be communicated that it’s not their fault.
Always stay open to the child’s needs and do not leave him/her out of the loop. Having said that, it must be stressed that putting burden on the child is absolutely no good. it’s a fine line. To illustrate, Dr. Phil says he has two rules about children: 1) Do not ask them to deal with adult issues and 2) Do not burden them with situations they cannot control.
Don’t badmouth the other parent–ever. This weighs heavy on the child who might feel they’re being asked to choose one parent over the other. A child needs the instruction of positive role models.
“The greatest gifts you can give your children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence." –Denis Waitley
Child psychologist Dr. Scott Carroll weighs in on an article here: https://www.fatherly.com/parenting/age-children-traumatized-divorce/ “The divorce itself is not the hardest part,” Carroll explains “the hardest part is the conflict. Learn to work together. Because you’re parents, you’ve got to work together,” Carroll says.
Many people’s first question is often this: What’s the worst age for a child to go through divorce? Opinions differ. Some believe that from ages 6 to 11 a child’s chances of inducing trauma might be worst. At that point, children start coming in to an excessively egocentric period of life and are searching for ways to become independent. The age of the child during the ordeal is critical and parental education is key. Some believe the worst years are from 2 to 4. The following article makes that argument: https://www.marriage.com/advice/divorce/worst-age-for-divorce-for-children/
Swiss biologist and psychologist Jean Piaget (1896-1980) developed a theory regarding the age of children as they grow and make sense of the world. He eventually developed a four-stage model of how the child’s mind processes the world at each stage. These four stages are universal for humans. Learn more here: https://www.learning-theories.com/piagets-stage-theory-of-cognitive-development.html
A break up can be viewed as a form of destruction, yes, but it’s also a new beginning–it’s a practice of building something new. It’s like a new fitness program. The discipline is to keep life stable and consistent. With help, you can do that.
Shana Tibi is a Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator. As a neutral professional, she "makes family conversations easy" through the processes of Mediation or Collaborative Divorce.
At a young age, she was a daughter of divorced parents, and deeply understands the impacts that divorce may have on a child.
Shana earned a Masters of Social Work (MSW) degree from California State University - East Bay. She was a Social Casework Specialist for Children and Family Services in Contra Costa County, California. As a Family Maintenance and Reunification Specialist, she helped parents with their court-ordered case plans to provide a safe environment for their children.
Shana implemented Peer Mediation programs at middle and high schools throughout Alameda County, California.
She currently lives in Sarasota with her husband and three young children.
Favorite thing about Florida:
Living in a place where family and friends love to visit!
Keisha Johnson is a Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator.
Keisha Johnson was born in Missouri, but has lived in Tennessee majority if her life. She moved to Florida in 2013 and currently resides in Tampa, Fl. She is divorced and has 3 daughters and new grandson. She received a Bachelor of Science from Union University, a MBA in Information Technology, a MBA in Information Technology and a MACR in Conflict Resolution/Mediation from Bethel University. She has over twenty years of experience in operations management and finance and is also a college professor teaching Information Technology courses.
She has a long history of contributing to numerous families for conflict resolution services. She is a member of various community service groups and has managed various sponsorship programs for churches, families and those displaced.
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