As much as getting divorced is difficult and stressful for husbands and wives, it is particularly distressing for their children. Because children lack the maturity, wisdom and experience of adults (and being out of the information loop), this limited ability to comprehend their parents' divorce can be both frightening and anxiety provoking to them.
From a child's perspective their parents' divorce represents a complete dismantling of a reality they once knew - even if that reality was filled with their parents' constant arguing and disagreements. Moreover, their distress is further heightened by observing the same in their parents as they react to the change in their relationship and circumstances.
Children's responses to their parents' divorce are quite variable. Some children act out while others internalize their upset. But one thing is for sure, it does not go unnoticed or without consequence.
The research on children's adjustment to divorce is pretty clear in stating that the first six months following seperation is a period marked by acute distress and disruption. However, for most children, a new "normal" is established in their lives within a year. Children's adjustment to divorce (both positive and negative) is largely influenced by their parents' conduct. The rule of thumb in this regard is - as soon as the parents settle down, so will the children.
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For more information, contact the Family Law Offices of Renee M. Marcelle at (415) 456-4444, or online at http://www.familylawmarin.com/