Going Through A Divorce? 7 Tips To Help Your Children Cope With It
There is no such thing as a good divorce when children are involved. It is not the break-up in itself that has negative effects on the children's health, but improper handling of the situation by the parents.
There is no such thing as a good divorce when children are involved. Scientists at the universities of Santiago de Compostela and Vigo carried out a study into how divorce affects the children's health and the findings revealed and increased risk of genitourinary, gastrointestinal, dermatological and neurological issues.
"It is not the break-up in itself that has negative effects on the children's health, but improper handling of the situation by the parents. This is indicated in the scientific literature and validated by our data," said the lead researcher, Maria Dolores Seijo Martinez. They designed a cross-sectional study of families where the parents were together or divorced, with the participation of 467 boys, girls and teenagers aged between two and 18.
The researchers did not find exposure to divorce to be linked to the development of respiratory, cardiovascular or musculo-skeletal issues, allergies, or hearing and sight problems. "Poor handling involves very high levels of interparental conflict, which makes it very difficult to maintain a good relationship. If children are exposed to these family situations for prolonged periods, they often experience toxic stress," said the researchers.
Tips to help children deal with divorce:
- It is essential to minimize the emotional stress and the only way to do it is to help your children endure it, is to show how much they are loved. This will make the child emotionally strong, and confident.
- During the process of divorce, it's important to be honest with your children, without being critical of your spouse. Talk to them and provide complete clarity. Dont leave them confused. Understand and support your children and let them vent out their emotions. Listen to what they have to say about it. Be patient and don't get aggressive even if they have anything to say, which you may not like.
- Some children assume that they are responsible for the divorce. Make sure you help your child clarify this misconception. Give them a clear reason as to why you have decided to separate. Always be patient with your child and reassure that both of you will continue to love them, even after the separation.
- Keep visible conflict, heated discussions, and legal talk away from the children and minimize the disruptions to their daily routines.
- A quick change can lead children to get tensed and aggressive. As long as possible, try not to alter the current living arrangements of your child. Even if you plan to shift the accommodation of the child, make sure you give them time to cope with the changes.
- Saying "I know how you feel" or "I know you must be feeling sad" lets the children know that their feelings are valid. It's important to encourage kids to get it all out before you start offering ways to make it better.
- Dont be in open conflict with your partner in front of your children as it sets a bad example. They are still learning how to form their own relationships. Children whose parents express anger and hostility are much more likely to have emotional and behavioral problems that continue past childhood.
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