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Stress During Divorce Can Have a Negative Impact on Children

Divorce can be painful and difficult for everyone involved, but children tend to be the most vulnerable to emotional trauma during the process. Further, children are at a higher risk for long-term negative effects from divorce. A new study indicates that stress may be one of the biggest factors. Learn how to mitigate this issue for your child during your divorce with help from the following information. 

Understanding Why Children Experience Stress During Divorce

Although the stress of divorce has been linked to numerous health problems for adults, few studies have examined how stress in divorce impacts children. Yes, there are those that have examined the emotional impact of divorce, both in the short and long term. There have also been others that have examined how contention in divorce can affect children. Yet none have looked specifically at stress.

Stress can exist outside of contention. It can be present, even when parents are working together to ensure the best interests of the child are protected. It can be the result of missing a parent that has moved out. It can be caused by fear that one or both parents may leave and never return. It can even be caused by feeling they are at fault for the split.

How the Stress of Divorce Can Impact Children

While every child may experience stress for a different reason, there are some similarities in how it manifests in a child's life. Younger children may regress, perhaps resorting to baby talk, thumb-sucking, bedwetting, or displaying separation anxiety. Older children may isolate themselves and pull away from their parents, or they might lash out at the parent. Some children may also be at risk for behavior problems, aggression, or self-harming.

Parents should be more than just mindful of these possibilities; they should be prepared for them to occur. Yes, parents should certainly do all they can to avoid contention and arguments, but they should also have a proactive plan in place. For example, parents of older children might agree to communicate about problematic behavior so that therapy can be sought, if necessary. Parents of younger children might agree to spend time together, as a family, to help reduce stress.

The Bottom Line

Staying together for the sake of your children, or to reduce stress, is not the answer. In fact, studies have indicated that children fare better in the long-run if stress and contention are eliminated. If staying together means arguing, divorce may actually be better for your child. Just know that you will likely need a game plan in place, and that your child will need each of you to behave lovingly, responsibly, and proactively.

The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C. understands that each family and situation is unique. We offer personalized and comprehensive representation to suit your family's needs. Ask how our Wheaton divorce attorneys can assist with your case. Call 630-462-9500 and schedule a consultation today.

Source:

http://www.theshorthorn.com/life_and_entertainment/stress-from-divorce-impacts-children-s-lives/article_d57644e2-02e7-11e7-9478-0700dade408f.html

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