Should you stay in your marriage for your kids? It’s tempting to think that a divorce is a bad idea, especially if you have children, and that staying together is better than any other alternative. If you are considering a divorce, there is certainly lots of research to indicate that divorce can have a lasting effect on kids. According to a Huffpost article, and many other articles, the effect of divorce on kids does not have to be a bad one.
In the article, Why a good divorce is better than a bad marriage for kids, (Huffpost 3/24/15 by Brette Sember) the writer discusses the many positive effects a divorce can have for kids when the parents are in a bad marriage. When parents stay in a bad marriage, kids have to cope with the fall-out from a never ending cycle of disputes, resentment, sadness, and even hate. Exposure to daily arguments, negative undercurrents, shouting, possible violence, and an atmosphere that is in no way calm and peaceful can have a huge impact on your child. In these circumstances, a divorce is often the best solution to bad marriage.
While the research is certainly there to show that divorce can have a negative impact on children, it does not account for the emotional damage that children suffer when they stay in a home with parents who are always arguing. Getting divorced can benefit the children in the sense that it can provide them with two separate homes where there is very little or no arguing. This creates a happier and healthier home for the kids and the parents. The benefits of this can be enormous, because happy people create happy environments, and the happiness rubs off onto the children.
Children can learn an important lesson from this. They can learn that compromise matters when they see their parents co-parenting and working through the issues in a divorce and that compromise is an important and effective skill in all healthy relationships. While no divorce is without its challenges, parents who choose to mediate their divorce show their children that working together to find a solution is preferable to fighting against each other.
Parents choosing to want personal happiness are teaching their children to do the same. Their children will see that everyone deserves a chance to pursue the life that they are meant to live, and that both parents have a right to do what they see as best for them. This does not have to end in a bad divorce, but instead can end in a divorce where the parents and the children are emotionally healthier and better adjusted. Instead of staying together for the kids, what if staying together is actually making things worse. It’s something to think about.