By Faruk Fatima Garba U13MM2064
The effect of divorce on children is one of the most frequently asked questions owing to the latest global statistics on divorce which is becoming alarming in every passing day. There are strong signals that more and more marriages are crashing for different reasons.
Divorce is traumatic for not only parents alone but also children. Most times parents worry how they can deal with their new status, forgetting the fact that their children are also going through the same emotions only that the level of their upset varies depending on the child’s age and the amount of information given in respect of the circumstances surrounding the divorce in the first place.
Children, toddlers, teenagers and youth have different ways of expressing their emotions when it comes to issues like divorce, especially with the fact that some have grown to seeing the way their parents interacts whether good or bad. Every child wants to see his or her daddy and mummy living together happily, no child wants to be separated from his parent except in a case of domestic violence.
Children whether younger or older view divorce different and if not managed properly can affect them in so many ways, could be presently or later. Children experience a lot of feelings as a result some children may respond in multiple and varied ways to the decision of their parents separation or divorce.
Some of their reactions are based on the fact that their parents are not going to be together again. Some of the factors that affect the children are as follows; anger, fear, a sense of loss, guilt and blame, shame and embarrassment, relief, insecurity or low self esteem, academic problem, depression and isolation or loneliness and so on.
Anger is one of the most common reactions children show to parental divorce. Children, grown up or teenagers may be so angered because the divorce has disrupted their family setting, hence creating disorder especially in a situation where they already have their friends and schools, but now have to move on as a result, some of really get angry at their parents and people around them. A times, children who suppress their anger may suffer heightened stress. They may experience anxiety attack, night mare, moodiness and severe depression.
Academic problem is not left out when mentioning the effect of divorce on children as it will be more difficult for children to concentrate on school work during family pandemonium.
Children from divorce homes are vulnerable to feeling of insecurity and low esteem is the collection of belief or feelings that we have about ourselves (perception) which influences our motivation, attitudes and behavior. They feel stigmatized by everybody, the children if care is not taken will lack confidence in themselves or what they can achieve.
The fact that in a divorce one parent seems to be with the children without the other, so the circumstance surrounding the divorce always make it harder for either parent to give attentions and affection to the children who in turn feel unlovable and abandoned.