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Can divorce be good for children?

On Behalf of | May 13, 2022 | Child Custody |

Many parents naturally believe that a divorce will not be a good thing for their kids, and they view divorce as a negative event that they want to avoid. You may have even heard couples say that they would love to split up but they’re simply staying together for the kids. They’re putting off the whole idea of divorce until the children go to college.

But is this belief accurate? Or, could a divorce actually be good for the children and not present all of the negative ramifications that people tend to assume are going to come along with it?

Two parents are better

There have been studies showing that having two involved parents in a child’s life is certainly better on multiple levels. It can help children thrive academically, for instance, and it can help them with their social and emotional development and relationships in their own lives. It is definitely important that the children get to spend quality time with both parents.

However, there has long been a presumption that quality time with kids means that those parents need to be married. This is not always the case. If both parents stay involved with the kids after a divorce, they can give them the same benefits as a married couple.

A high-conflict home life

Beyond that, if the marriage involves hostility and generally creates a high-stress living environment for the kids, it is usually better for their development if the parents get divorced and then focus on co-parenting. This could reduces the stress for the children and can have a better outcome than if the parents decide that they’re going to stay together “for the kids”.

As noted by researchers published through the National Library of Medicine, if children have parents who frequently disagree and argue with one another, they tend to “score worse on measures of academic achievement, behavior problems, psychological well-being, and adult relationship quality.” Children see and sense high conflict, hostility and lack of love or respect.

Once parents divorce, the reduction in conflict around the children may reduce household stress and be better for the kids going forward. Effective co-parenting after divorce can then help children achieve better social relationships, better psychological development and higher grades than if the parents had stayed married. 

Keeping your children as the focal point is important; so make sure you know about all of your legal options when it comes to finding a way to co-parent peacefully and effectively after divorce.