It is no secret that divorce can have a negative impact on children. From switching between homes to dealing with angry parents, the changes that come with divorce can take a toll on children’s emotional well-being. Kids may blame themselves for their parents’ breakup or not understand why the marriage ended. It is hard being a child during and after a divorce.
The marital split does not affect all children equally, however. When it comes to academic achievement, a recent study reveals that those from wealthy households actually experience the most setbacks, reports Time. Compared to their peers in intact families, wealthy children who had gone through an unexpected divorce had lower rates of high school and college graduation.
Reasons for the greater damage
Children who are higher up on the economic ladder tend to have more stable homes. They usually do not face the same types of daily challenges that those from poorer families may face. Therefore, a divorce brings about more disruption and dysfunction than these children are used to, especially when the divorce is sudden. When major marital strife has been present for some time, a divorce is generally beneficial and has no influence on education.
How to reduce the impact
The ideal is to save the marriage and turn it into a source of healthy relationships for the whole family. However, this is often not possible for numerous reasons, and divorce is the best choice under the circumstances.
This does not mean all the consequences are unavoidable. On the contrary, parents can take steps to reduce contention during the process and make the transition to two homes smoother. One of these ways is by choosing mediation over litigation.
Benefits of mediation
Mediation fosters communication and cooperation between ex-spouses. Divorce through this approach is over more quickly and involves less emotional turmoil for all parties, including the children, due to the civility mediation encourages. Children seeing their parents be able to work out an agreement together can help reduce some of the negative effects of the breakup.