Growth and Changes that May Occur when Parents Divorce
If one thing is inevitable in life, it is that everything in life changes, just like the seasons come and go every year. Sometimes, you enjoy these changes, like when it gets warm and you are able to play outside again.
Other times, you may not be happy about the change that is occurring because you don’t like the end result. For example, if you hate cold weather, you are likely not a huge fan of the winter. Everyone is different and has various likes and dislikes. It is important to discover both in life, so you can help promote inner growth and positive changes and also so you can learn from past mistakes or things that you don’t enjoy, so you know not to try it again.
When parents decide to get a divorce, this is a huge decision and change within the family and it can often be a very sad, and scary obstacle that you are forced to experience with them, because all of these changes effect your life. Sometimes this is what makes childhood and adolescents so difficult to experience, because you lack the control to change the things in life you dislike, like parents getting a divorce.
If your parents have made this choice, it is often very difficult for them to come to this resolution as well. Parents divorce for all sorts of reasons, but ultimately a decision is made that each parent is better on their own versus together as a couple. Divorce is fairly common in the United States, so know and understand that you are not alone in this struggle.
Some tools that can be beneficial and helpful if your parents are divorcing is to talk to your parents about what is going on and the changes that are occurring. Sometimes, it may be scary to talk to your parents about difficult subjects. If this is the case, you can always talk to your friends for support, or another trusting adult such a therapist, counselor, teacher or possibly someone at church.
Keeping your thoughts and feelings bottled up on the inside, will often lead to feelings of anger and sadness. It is essential that through the process of divorce you learn healthy skills to manage difficult feelings when they arise to ensure your mental health and physical safety. Most importantly it is essential to understand that you are not the reason or cause of your parent’s separation.
Your parents have made this decision together and it has to do with the health of their own relationship with each other. If this becomes unhealthy and can’t be resolved, sometimes parents will choose to separate. At first this will likely be challenging for all family members, but with support and time, these feelings will change and things will become easier for you and your family.
Amber Sanner, MS, LMFT