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How Children Are Affected By Divorce at Different Ages

Posted on in Divorce

children and divorce,  Schaumburg divorce lawyer, divorce at different ages, effects of divorce, divorce processWhen parents decide to end their marriage in divorce, the split can be difficult for everyone involved. During divorce, children often struggle to come to terms with the end of their parents’ relationship and adjust to living in two different households.

While divorcing parents are often focused on resolving legal issues and determining what their life will look like post-divorce, they should also be sure they understand how their children will be affected.

Divorce’s Effects and Children’s Age

Children’s age when their parents break up is one of the key factors that determine how they deal with the divorce. Parents should be aware of how children are affected by divorce at the following ages:

  • Babies and toddlers - When children are under the age of three, their cognitive abilities are still developing. Divorce when children are this age will mostly have the effect of disrupting their lives and routines, and they will struggle to understand why a parent is not present. These children may experience developmental delay or regression, increased irritability, and difficulty sleeping.

  • Preschoolers and school-age children - Children at this age are egocentric, and they will often internalize family conflicts, believing that they are to blame for their parents’ breakup. Divorce may lead these children to become withdrawn, experience anxiety, or begin acting out.

  • Teenagers - After puberty, children begin to be able to think more critically, and they are often accepting and understanding of their parents’ divorce. At this age, they may still require time to adjust, but they will often be able to know that divorce is ultimately best for their family.

No matter their age, divorce is hardest on children when they are exposed to conflict. When parents argue in front of their children, or criticize or attack their ex-spouse in an attempt to win children over to their “side,” this can cause children emotional harm. In many cases, divorce can ultimately be beneficial, since it reduces the amount of conflict in children’s lives.

Children are also negatively affected by lack of contact with a parent. If a parent stops being involved in their children’s lives or does not maintain a consistent parenting time schedule after divorce, children may feel abandoned and believe that they have done something that makes them unworthy of their parent’s love.

Contact an Arlington Heights Divorce Attorney

During divorce, it is incredibly important for parents to continue providing love and support for their children, helping them adjust to the major changes in their lives. The compassionate attorneys of Anderson & Associates, P.C. can work with you to make sure you have addressed the necessary legal issues during your divorce, and we can advocate for your family’s best interests in court. Contact a Schaumburg divorce lawyer at 847-995-9999 to schedule a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.fatherly.com/parenting/age-children-traumatized-divorce/

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-gail-gross/the-impact-of-divorce-on-children-of-different-ages_b_6820636.html

http://www.parents.com/parenting/divorce/coping/what-children-understand-about-divorce/

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