Within today’s marriages over half will end in divorce. Many of
these divorced families include children, and this kind of separation
can have a psychological effect on them. The vulnerability placed on children
can commonly be overwhelming for them, leaving them to believe that the
divorce is their own fault. When in all reality the divorce is not their
fault at all. Yet, I believe that some divorces controlled in the proper
manner can be helpful to the children’s growth. Divorce may hurt
the child, but in the end it can make him or her stronger.
As many psychologists will explain, divorce can hurt child development
by causing confusion in ideas of love. The children will often believe
they were the cause of the divorce and that it’s up to them to bring
their parents together. Therefore this idea of causing the divorce will
add more stress to the child’s life. When my parents separated I
was just six years old, and I really didn't’t understand what was
going on. No one actually took the time to sit down and explain to me
that “mom and dad” were no longer in “love” and
wanted a divorce. So I felt it was all up to me to put things back into
place and bring our family back together again. For years I believed I
could do it, and I tried. It wasn't’t until my mom and father started
to date other people for me to realize that all my efforts were futile.
It was from those early struggles did I start to learn about the real
world. As a divorcee’s child I was set to a schedule between my
parents. I’d see my father every Tuesday, every other weekend, and
on holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving. The same went for my birthday
as well. Confused yet? Because I still am. This caused massive stress
on my life, especially growing up. Yet, it was from this schedule I learned
to become detail-orientated. I would need to know where I am going, at
what time I’m leaving, and when I’ll be home. I was always
ready to go before my father came to pick me up. I efficiently learned
to pack and repack my suitcase to be ready for wherever I was headed,
a very handy skill to have especially for those who are always on the
But most of all the important lesson I feel any child can gain from this
experience is a lesson on love. The child can see how important it is
to wait for the right person. How it’s good to date many others
and figure out what he wants to have in his future mate. The idea is that
it isn’t good to just settle on the first person he’ll meet,
because there are so many different types out there. I’m learning
this slowly, but I can see the beginning of this lesson. I’m just
a teenager, and I don’t know everything but I know enough to realize
settling on the first person I meet can have disastrous effects on the
rest of my life. I’ve had instances in which I’ve held on
to my boyfriends for extremely long periods up to a year or more. It held
me back from many experiences and opportunities I could’ve had in
my life. Yet, if I hadn’t talked to my mother about this, I feel
I wouldn’t be at the level of understanding I’m at today.
Therefore it’s very important that parents sit down with their children
and talk to them about the reasons for the divorce, and why it didn’t
work out. Explain to the child why it’s imperative for him to look
and wait for that special someone. I feel this is a very large aspect
of the child’s life. The child must understand the divorce is not
his fault and that he can survive and, yes, even thrive from this hardship.
I have grown into a respectable young woman, and I’m still maturing
as I learn more and more every day. I feel that, yes, a divorce can hurt
and possible damage a child. Yet with the right care and nurturing from
his or her parents, the child can grow and flourish from it, making him
stronger for the harder lessons in life to come. Just as a phoenix rises
from the ashes, a child can prosper from a divorce.
American Academy of Child Adolescent Psychiatry. Facts for
Families© 2007. 4/10/07.
A Hidden Love
By: Holly Mitchell
Oh my love,
My heart has been torn from my chest
Still beating, forced down my throat,
Slowing choking me,
Stealing my every breath,
Leaving me speechless.
How am I to go on,
In this anguish,
This pain that ever burdens my soul?
Why must my mind be split in two
Forever bickering over right and wrong?
Can you not see the sorrow,
That reflects in my glazed eyes?
Can you not see the troubles hidden
Behind this plastered smile?
Do you not know me better than I myself?
Can you not easily tell when I lie or when I hide?
Let me come to my senses,
For this is all I can take.
This tornado of thoughts
Clutters my mind and confuses me more.
These muddled waters never cease,
Yet the moon leaves a ribbon of light,
The only path seen clear.
Everything else is cast in shadows,
Leaving me to question,
Await me there?