Going through the divorce process could make you feel stressed and overwhelmed. You might need time to adjust after separating from your ex and beginning a new chapter in your life.
Aside from you, relatives and loved ones might feel affected by the divorce. However, your child could receive the most brutal blow. Divorce could negatively affect your child, manifesting in their behaviors, emotions and mental wellness.
Still, their reactions could vary. They could experience the following effects based on their age:
- Preschool age: They could feel scared and sad because of the divorce. They might begin exhibiting unusual behavior, such as having tantrums. They could also have problems eating, sleeping and using the toilet. Kids this age tend to blame themselves for the divorce.
- School-age: Kids this age can process the situation better but experience more emotional issues. They can seem moody and aggressive, potentially due to their tendency to reject changes related to the divorce. The stress and confusion could distract them and affect their performance at school.
- Adolescents: They usually respond to divorce by acting withdrawn and depressed. Sometimes, they might feel pressured to act maturely and take charge of the household because everything around them seems to be falling apart. They might also blame themselves for the divorce and participate in risky activities.
Regardless of age, your children will need your support and involvement through this challenging time.
How can I help my children?
You can help your child adjust to the situation by openly communicating with them, allowing them to express themselves and reassuring them that the divorce is not their fault.
Sometimes, you might need help from other family members to support their emotional needs. Allow them to find comfort in connecting with loved ones. Additionally, you could hire professionals to help you and your children process the circumstances.