Many divorcing parents are understandably concerned about the effect of the break-up on their children — not just in childhood and adolescence, but when they become adults. One divorce attorney who is also a therapist offers some insights based on her professional experience, as well as her life as a divorced mom and the child of divorced parents, that may be reassuring.
If people co-parent as well as they can, a divorce can actually have some positive impacts on children. Even a certain amount of discord in the home prior to the break-up can help kids learn to better navigate their own relationships later in life.
Being a child of divorce can help kids learn to be fair-minded. They are more likely to see things from multiple points of view and appreciate all of them. Even if their parents get along relatively well, kids have to learn to deal with parents who sometimes will have conflicting interests.
Learning to navigate a new relationship with parents who are no longer living together can help kids develop high emotional intelligence. By likely being exposed to a range of emotions from both parents, they can learn to be more insightful, sensitive and compassionate.
Children of divorce are often more independent than their peers whose parents are together. This may derive from their parents being distracted by their own issues. Children often become more self-motivated as a result.
Kids whose parents divorce often become high achievers. This can happen for a number of reasons. Sometimes they're trying to please their parents or reassure them that they are doing fine by excelling at school, sports or other activities. They may also find that their accomplishments unite their parents together in a positive way.
While all of these aspects of living through a divorce can make children kinder, more accomplished people, they can also have serious negative impacts. Trust issues and insecurities can lead to problems in later relationships and other parts of their life.
That's why it's essential for parents to keep an eye on each of their children for any negative emotional or psychological issues. If parents are able to get along well enough to opt for a mediated divorce, it can lessen the stress on their kids. If you believe that your child would benefit from talking things over with a therapist, your Florida family law attorney may provide you with some recommendations.
Source: Huffington Post, "4 Benefits of Being a Child of Divorce," Vicki L. Shemin, April 04, 2016