Divorce Adjustment Factors
Divorce (what we call the "death of a marriage") takes its toll on everyone involved. When divorce becomes a reality in a family, there are are some factors that can lessen the impact of divorce.
Lessens The Impact of Divorce
- Parents do not put children in the middle.
- Children are told about the separation.
- Children are aware of the conflict between parents.
- Children are not held responsible for the divorce.
- Children are not used for parental support.
- Children receive support from significant people.
- Parents resolve personal anger.
- The absent parent stays in contact with the child.
- Family moves into new schedule fairly quickly.
- Other environmental factors remain stable.
- Each parent frequently spends individual time with each child.
- Parents assist each child with individual adjustment reaction.
- Children are allowed to grieve.
- Family focuses on the positive and the future.
- Parents had previous good relationship with the child.
Increases the Impact of Divorce
- Children are asked to choose between parents.
- Children are not told about the separation or are given little information.
- Parents hide conflict and angry feelings.
- Children are made to fell that divorce is their fault.
- Parent relies on child for personal support.
- Children are isolated from family and friends.
- Parents are unable to resolve anger.
- The absent parent has little contact with the child.
- Only child.Family remains disorganized long after separation.
- Life is greatly changed: school, neighborhood, parent's work hours and so on.
- Little individual attention is given to children.
- Parents are not aware of individual adjustment reactions.
- Loss is denied—no grieving is allowed.Family focuses on present calamity.
- Child had not previously felt loved or valued by parents.