The Emotional Impact of Divorce on Children

The Emotional Impact of Divorce on Children

The Emotional Impact of Divorce on Children

Parents must take care of their children no matter what—even when their relationship ends. When something traumatic happens, adults need to put their feelings aside to ensure that their children are okay. The reality is, the emotional impact of divorce on children is significant. Consequently, it’s a parents’ job to make their children feel better about the situation by reassuring them that they will remain a family unit. This article overviews the typical emotions children experience when their parents separate and how you can help them get through it.


Children often feel guilty when their parents separate. Adolescents may blame themselves for the end of their parents’ marriage. You have to reassure them that this is not the case. Let them know that you two had your own issues and that this is the best resolution for everyone. You are putting their best interests forward by separating as a couple.


Divorce may also trigger feelings of anger in your children. Adolescents may start:

  • Acting out at school because they harbor feelings of resentment.
  • Hanging out with the wrong crowd as a way to get attention.
  • Defying household rules to get back at you for separating.
  • Showing a decline in school performance because they are dealing with other emotions.


Over 50 percent of marriages end in divorce. Yet, it’s not uncommon for children to feel embarrassed by the situation. Adults are responsible for getting rid of these feelings of shame. Let them know that it’s much better to separate and develop a healthy relationship elsewhere than to stay in an unhealthy one. There is nothing wrong with parents recognizing that ending their relationship is best.


Children with divorced parents may also develop trust issues later in life because they thought their parents would stay together forever. Again, parents need to reassure their children that the situation has nothing to do with them. The best way to build trust within your child is to follow through with what you say. Stay a family unit and put their interests first so that they know they can still trust you.

These are some potential emotional impacts of divorce on children. Parents have to do everything they can to minimize the effects on their kids. The best way to do this is to work with a parenting plan lawyer to create a plan that works for everyone. LaCoste Family Law has one of the highest-rated attorneys in the business to help you get started.