Children of divorce are deeply impacted by the experience. According to Nicholas Wolfinger, author of Understanding the Divorce Cycle: The Children of Divorce in Their Own Marriages, the divorce rate of a child's future marriage when one parent divorces is 50% higher. If both parents come from former divorces, the rate is 200% higher. That's a scary statistic!
Does this mean that parents should stay together for the sake of the children? Not necessarily. Parents who stay together in an unhappy marriage for the sake of a child can cause other forms of damage. Our children learn much about how married people act by observing their parents. Parents have to realize what messages they are communicating to their children.
Some children copy the patterns they see, but others try to go in the opposite direction or formulate a different viewpoint of how a marriage should work. In an article from Bustle.com, a young woman shares her feelings about what she learned from watching her divorced parents, her generation's views on marriage, and why she still wants to get married despite the problems she sees with the institution. Many younger people have a much different idea about marriage than their parents due to the experiences they've seen and changing views on the subject.
If you are considering divorce, consider getting family counseling first. If that doesn't work, a counselor can still be very helpful for children of divorce so they can understand what is happening. If you need advice about divorce, co-parenting, or strategies to keep your marriage intact, call Elise Buie Family Law Group, PLLC. We've helped many families in Washington find healing.