Effect of Parents Divorce on Children, Adolescents and Adults

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In society broken families have been always on humans’ lives. Divorce is the major cause why family is broken apart that is a common thing in today’s life. However, in some cases divorces can be the only solution to bring stability, be on peace, and be happy each one another. Divorce is the last decision that needs to be taken as a couple, because it can be bring consequences to the whole family. Annulment is a legal dissolution of a marriage by a court in other to dissolve an irremediably broken marriage. In this article will go in depth in each stage where children, adolescents, and even the parents can have some problems that may affect in their long-term growth when it comes to divorce.

In the article, “Wilkinson & Finkbeiner Family Law Attorney’s” said, “As of 2016, both marriages rates and divorce rates in the U.S. are decreasing, the divorce rate in the U.S. is 3.2 per 1,000 population.” This demonstrate that people divorce frequently, but most of the women are the ones that want to separate from her husband. Divorce it can be a massive change into the life of a boy or girl no matter the age of the individuals most of the time they present the same effects when parents are separating.

There are the ones who are witness of how the love on their parents had been lost, how they fight every night, ear them saying “I don’t want to spend more time by your side” for both of their parents. They start to begin thinking why dad and mom are talking bad to each other, when they remember that both of their parents one day they were in love and saying beautiful complements to one another.

In this article name “Psychology Today” by Carl E. Pickhardt who has a Ph.D. in Psychologist states, “Having parents break their marriage commitment, adjusting to going back and forth between two different households, and the daily absence of one parent while living with the other.” All of these creates a challenging circumstance within a new family, it significantly changes children life from what was before.

Carl E. Pickhardt states, “Convincing a young child of the permanence of divorce can be hard when his intense longing fantasizes that somehow, some way, mom and dad will be living back together again someday.” This show that as a young child can be hard to see their parents separate because they are holding hope for one day they will be reunited together and live happy after, but in reality, that’s not true.

When they become adolescents, children tend to develop some kind of resentment towards one parent or in some cases towards both of them. In an adolescent can realize more quickly and accept the finality of his unwelcome family had change. When parents are currently getting a divorce a big error they do are that still hang out, when there is a holiday they all came together, like there were family.

On the article “The Impact of Divorce on Young Children and Adolescents” mentions, “Parents who put in a joint presence at special family celebrations and holiday events to recreate family closeness for the children only feed the child’s fantasy and delay his adjustment.” (Pickhardt, 2011). This actions only nourish the child’s fantasy and do not allow him to accept or realize that his parents will not be together again.

Young child’s hearing the word “divorce” in their mind are starting to think about many questions like, “What is going to happen next?” “Which of my parents will I be staying?” “They do not love me anymore?” it’s difficult to talk with a child and more answering those questions and the response that the child’s can be regressive. It can cause separations anxieties. For example, crying at bed sometimes, bed-wetting, and some temporarily loss of self-care skills all of this is only to call the attention in order to parents do not separate.

Divorce in Adolescents

Carl E. Pickhard states, “Adolescents tends to deal more aggressively [towards] divorce, often reacting in a mad [mood], rebellious way, more resolved to disregard family discipline and take care of himself since parents have failed to keep commitments to family that were originally made.” This demonstrate that adolescents tend to control their life by behaving as they wish are determinate to live their life his way.

Belief that now he can encourage and allowed to act on his own. In the article “A Career Counseling Approach for Adolescents of Divorce” mentions, “Researchers suggest that adolescents from divorce families have poorer academic, behavioral and social-emotional outcomes that their peer from intact families” (Peris & Emery, 2005). These are some of the effects that parents that divorce and can cause to the adolescents that are older and realize quicker what is happening. Adolescents are more usually to have depression, school dropout, can lead to the use or drug and alcohol, and uncontrolled behavior.

In this article mentions, “In addition, the economic hardship during and following a divorce can make it difficult for parents to provide resources such as books, computer, travel, and assistance with college tuition to facilitate their children’s educational success” (Amato & Cheadle, 2005). Paying for a divorce is not cheap it cost a lot of money which can be user to the future of their child, it impedes adolescents to learn and succeed in school and attainment their degree. In this article states, “Reports in his investigation [shows] while most adolescents appear unhappy about the divorce itself, they do not view their parents’ decision as insensible or immature” (Reinhard, 1997).

This illustrates that young adult understands better when it comes to a divorce and adapting to a new environment. The article “The Effects of Divorce on Adolescents” mentions, “When mothers remarry, and stepfathers are present, problems are less apparent-the personality and immaturity problems diminish and fewer signs of psychotic behavior are prevalent” (Reinhard, 1997). This can be because they have a figure of a father with is not the same as the real dad but is better than only having your mom doing both of the roles.

If the father is remarried, stepmothers diminish delinquency, but conduct problems emerge is more likely to happened when there are boys because they enter in a stage where they do not agree with the decision that the father took because sometimes dad can remarry a young lady which sons cannot take as a mother. This report “Deconstructing the Impact of Divorce on Children” sates, “Two researchers state that, “painful memories and experiences may be a lasting residue of the divorce.”

They add that, “it is important to distinguish pain or distress about parental divorce from longer term psychological symptoms or pathology” (Rappaport, 2013). The quote demonstrate that divorce can lead to sadness, worry, and regret that coexist with competent psychological and social functioning. In this article also states, “Not having psychological difficulties as a result of divorce does not mean that children are not impacted by the divorces long-terms” (Rappaport, 2013). Even though adolescents are all right with the divorce it doesn’t mean that the think that their childhood was the same as the other children.

Divorce in Adults

In the article “Parental Divorce and Children’s Adjustment” states, “Divorce can make it more difficult for parents to monitor and supervise children effectively, to discipline consistently, and to provide warmth and affection. It shows that after the divorce parent-child becomes a conflict that increase more often, and family cohesion decrease.

The article by Jennifer E. Lansford mentions, “Through assortative mating, parents with problems such as depression, substance use, or antisocial behavior are at risk of selecting spouses with similar problems” (Maes, 1998). Those problems are some of the affects that both of the parents can show when divorcing. When a couple of husbands decide to divorce and have children it complicated the situation because they have to decide what is happening to child, who is going to stay with the kid and questions like this.

The article “Parental Divorce and Children’s Adjustment” states, “A distinction is made between legal custody, which involves making decisions regarding the child, and physical custody, which involves daily living arrangements. The most common arrangement following divorce is for parents to share joint legal custody but for mothers to have sole physical custody.” (Lansford, 2009). Most of the times the mother stays with all the legal custody of the kids they need to figure out how are they going to divide the time with the other parents to spend time with the child and most important the child support in order to support the kid in whatever he/she need to his/her needs.

For example, in the article by Paul R. Amato and Alan Booth mentions, “1 year after divorce, custodial mothers were less affectionate towards their children, communicated with them less often, punished them more harshly, and were more inconsistent in their use of discipline than continuously married mothers” (Amato, Booth, 1996). Since mothers now need to work to be independent and have something to give their child not just rely on what the father gives to the child.


Divorce can be a agonizing process for everyone that is involve. It’s a legal act that separates a family and divides into two part. Parents should considerate that with this action their children suffer, and their life can be impacted as well. It is important that us as parents help our children adjust to the changes that they are going through and pay attention to any behavioral or psychological problem that can develop.

Cite this paper

Effect of Parents Divorce on Children, Adolescents and Adults. (2021, Jun 28). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/effect-of-parents-divorce-on-children-adolescents-and-adults/

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