When your child isn’t coping well with divorce

Posted by Lauren S. CohenMay 26, 20200 Comments

Divorce is far from easy, especially when children are involved. It can be a scary, frustrating and confusing time for them. The first year after their parents split up is often the hardest for kids.

A divorced parent needs to understand that it can take a year or longer for your child to cope with the separation and come to terms with the new normal. That said, not every child reacts to divorce the same way. Some kids adjust rather quickly, and others have lingering problems.

The following are some warning signs that could mean your child is suffering from emotional issues stemming from the divorce:

  • Struggling to understand why the divorce happened
  • Blaming or resenting their parents for the divorce
  • Feeling guilty about and blaming themselves for the divorce
  • Anxiousness or sadness when apart from one or both parents
  • Regressing to childish behaviors they outgrew before
  • Tantrums, angry outbursts and increased aggression
  • Dramatic mood swings ranging from one extreme to another
  • Lowered self-esteem and symptoms of depression
  • Isolating from friends and social situations
  • Being uncooperative with daily tasks
  • Being uncommunicative with you
  • Declining grades and other problems at school, such as cheating, fighting or truancy
  • Impulsive behavior, risk taking, and alcohol and drug abuse

If your child is exhibiting any behaviors like this, be as supportive and understanding a parent as you can be, while also protecting and disciplining them. It might be time for professional help. You can discuss any concerns that you have with your child's pediatrician. They may recommend a therapist or other line of treatment.

Having your kid's back — and someone to have yours

Of course, you want to do what's best for your child and see them get the help they need. But when you share custody, it can sometimes be challenging to agree with your ex-spouse about what counseling or medical help is appropriate. An experienced and compassionate New York attorney can assist you with exercising your parental rights and fighting to ensure the welfare of your child.