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The Adjustment Of Children Of Divorce

1029 words - 5 pages

The Adjustment of Children of Divorce
It is hard to imagine a more difficult transition for a child than to be a party to his or her parents' divorce. The children in a divorcing family know that nothing will ever be the same again, and their previously secure world is in a state of change. So what can parents do to help mitigate the impact of a divorce? Understand that a parent can’t make the effects go away, but they can make the situation more tolerable and secure for a child. Both parents must be involved. It does very little good for one parent alone to work at reassurance. Both parents need to make sure the children understand that both mom and dad will still be their parents. ...view middle of the document...

The psychological well being of the main parent is a very important factor on the children’s adjustment. Single parents tend to face many problems, which make effective parenting difficult. Single parents often lack adequate support systems now that there family has broken apart. This leads to psychological problems, which can be easily mirrored by children. Some of the psychological problems single parents face are depression, loss of self esteem, and anxiety. Furthermore, the custodial parent may feel over burdened by the new demands and responsibilities of making all of the daily household decisions alone. This burden of new tasks is very stressful. This may cause emotional overload because of the need to cope with their own emotional reactions and those of the children. Therefore it may be difficult for them to discipline consistently and be responsive to their children’s needs. In Nicholas Kalters article “Long-term Effects of Divorce on Children: A Developmental Vulnerability Model he explains that the better the custodial parent adapts to the adversity of divorce, the more effective he or she can be at providing care, guidance, and support for their children and the more positively adjusted they will be.
Level of involvement by the non residential parent, usually the father, is an important determinant of children’s adjustment to divorce. According to Bane, many early investigations of the impact of divorce on children attributed developmental disabilities to father absence. The U.S. Bureau of the census in 1986 said that mother headed families are frequently below or near poverty due in part to the unwillingness of non residential fathers to provide child support. Low levels of child support are typically accompanied by low levels of contact. Paternal absence and infrequent, irregular contact hold back children’s adaptation to divorce. Children deprived of paternal contact may grow up without a secure male model, may receive less parental support and supervision, and may be raised by a single mother who is under great stress.
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