The Effects of Divorce on Young Children

effects of divorce on young children

Here at the Law Offices of Gerard A. Falzone, we speak with people every day that are worried how divorce will affect them, but also how it might change the life of their children. Most children find divorce to be sad, confusing and stressful. These issues are not unavoidable, but it is important to be aware of them to help prevent problems. Below are some of the effects of divorce on young children:

Poor social and math skills

According to a study carried out in 2011 by the University of Wisconsin-Madison, children from divorced families are likely to lag behind other children in social skills and math. They may also suffer from stress, poor self-esteem and anxiety. The children are also less likely to have good social skills like their peers from stable homes.

Increased chances of not finishing high school

According to a recent study, 78 percent of children from intact households finish high school by the time they are 20 years. On the other hand, only 60 percent of children who go through family changes (divorce, remarriage or death) graduate at around the same time. Younger children tend to be more affected during divorce periods. Also, the more changes children go through, the more difficult it becomes for them to finish school.

High risks of getting a stroke

There is a strong correlation between the risk of adults getting stroke and divorce. However, many adults with divorced parents are not prone to getting a stroke. The relationship can be as a result of being exposed to stress, which may change a person’s physiology. This effect was seen among children who experienced divorce in the 1950s, when divorce was not as common as it is today.

Susceptibility to sickness

Children living with divorced parents have a 35 percent risk of developing health difficulties compared to the 26 percent risk in all children. This is as a result of “very significant stress” because of the dramatic change in their lives. Divorce can also reduce a child’s accessibility of health insurance, which may result to loss of certain aspects that contribute to good health. This includes a safe environment and constant adult supervision. Health difficulty risks are higher than average during the first four years of divorce but can actually increase in the years that follow.

Indulging in drugs

Children from divorced families, compared to their peers in non-divorced families, are considerably likely to indulge themselves in drugs. Research shows that men whose parents divorced when they were kids have higher odds of 48 percent of smoking than those raised in intact families. Women have higher odds of 39 percent of smoking.

Greater chances of getting divorced

Children from divorced homes are more likely to go through divorce when they get married. Although they aspire for stable relationships, the children tend to get married as teenagers. Apart from this, they tend to marry people from divorced families. A research carried out by Wolfinger suggests that a couple with one spouse who grew up in a divorced home has double chances of getting a divorce. If both partners as children experienced divorce, they have triple chances of getting a divorce.

A child of any age may feel uncertain or get angry at the prospect of their parents separating. When going through a divorce, you should be there for your children to reassure them everything will be fine to help mitigate these effects of divorce on young children. You can help your kids cope with divorce by attending to all their needs with a reassuring attitude and providing them with a stable home.