The Impact of Divorce on Children

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“There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.” Nelson Mandela

Parenting can’t be left to the TV, computer, I-pad, I-phone tweeting, texting or any other technological device. the truth about divorce as far as the kids are concerned differs from what we might think as parents. It has never been pretty for the man and woman involved. Now we should look at the kids side to divorce which is the unheard and unseen pieces of the story. Adults want and must get their lives back together but kids can never put their lives back together. In the best of circumstances there is loss and sometimes permanent loss. Kids face the hardest challenges when there is a divorce yet are given the least amount of support.Children agree with the parent they are with at that moment. They are devastated at the negative comments mothers, fathers and step parents make about one of their parents no matter how filtered the remark is. Children lose their roots in a divorce. Many grandparents, aunts uncles and cousins are removed from their lives. When both sides of the family are insulting or talking about the other side, kids begin to trust nobody.

Discipline is difficult because there are four people fostering their own set of rules. There is less time spent with the kids by either parent so no one wants to spend that time correcting behavior. School work is on a back burner because each parent believes the other helped with the homework. The kids live more like Tumbleweeds because they are shifted from home to home, bus to bus, and rules to rules. Kids share true feelings less because they won’t run the risk of offending mom or dad and becoming ostracized themselves. Love is not always trusted because after all we dumped mom or dad or grandma or Papa or aunts uncles and cousins. Kids believe and rightly so, we might dump them one day.

Having taught school for many years  and observing this first hand I know that divorce, necessary or unnecessary, blows up the family structure. There are always lifetime scars even in  the best of cases. Destroy a plants roots and you have damaged the plant. Demolishing a child’s roots and ancestry and you wipe out pieces of your child’s being. The words are harsh but divorce is harsh on kids. It should never be taken so lightly. With so many families opting for it I would venture to say we need to think over our relationship and attempt to work things out.

Family must be overestimated rather than underestimated. Food, clothes, language, patience, discipline, school work, responsibility, accountability, and time with our kids are subjects of extreme importance.Love will always top everything and can work miracles. Loving our child unconditionally is key in my opinion. We may all agree we do love our kids but many times kids are not aware of this unconditional love. Time we fessed up. Kids will always love their biological parents regardless of the shortcomings.Our presence is worth a million times more than our presents.We will never be our child’s friend but we can always be their parent.Being a parent will be our highest calling in life. The more we teach and impart empathy to our child, the more our soul will grow.

“When you thought I wasn’t looking I saw you hang up my first painting on the refrigerator and I wanted to paint another one.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I saw you feed a stray cat and I thought it was good to be kind to animals.

When you thought I wasn’t’ looking I saw you make my favorite cake for me and I knew that little things are special things.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I heard you say a prayer and I believed there is a God I could always talk to.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I felt you kiss me goodnight and I felt loved.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I saw that you cared and I wanted to be everything that I could be.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I LOOKED….and wanted to say thanks for all the things I saw when you thought I wasn’t looking.” Connie Back

(Taken from the book TUMBLEWEED KIDS)

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