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Will a divorce harm your children?

18107768_S.jpgFor parents, the prospect of a looming divorce can create a significant amount of anxiety. While they have probably accepted that a divorce is all but certain, they have some doubts, worrying that a divorce will negatively affect their children and lead to lifelong problems.

There is some statistical correlation between children who have gone through the experience of their parents divorcing and their developing various problems later in life. But, like many "environmental" studies, determining which of those problems was "caused" by the divorce and which had another causation is incredibly difficult.

The life experiences that lead us from childhood to that of an adult are tremendously varied. In a family which is subjected to domestic violence and substance abuse, a divorce may lead to a vastly improved physical and psychological situation.

For children in a marriage which have gone tepid and where there is little genuine affection and caring shown between the parents, a divorce and a new relationship between their parent and someone who demonstrates these characteristics, the divorce may allow them to blossom and thrive, as opposed to merely getting by every day.

And every child is different. Some may take a leadership role with their younger siblings and may develop skills of self-reliance and resilience within their character that serves them well as they grow into adulthood.

Some will also recognize the value of genuine affection and love and how to build and foster that within their own relationships. They may have learned how important it is and to look beyond the shallow and trivial to create long-lasting relationships.

Source: washingtonpost.com, "My parents' divorce didn't break me -- it made me stronger," Alisa Schindler, March 11, 2016

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