Cause and Effects of Divorce – Term Paper

Beyond any doubt, marriage is one of the happiest moments in life of every person. When people meet each other, fall in love and decide to create a family they do not even want to imagine that one day they will have to divorce. Apart from being very painful, this procedure may have short-term and long-term effects on both ex-spouses and their children. What are the main causes and effects of this step?

In some sense, divorce itself is both a cause and an effect. The most common reasons that force people to break off their relations are the following: lack of money, immaturity of wife and husband to settle their family problems, alcohol or drug abuse, new love etc. Before making such a decision, adults should thoroughly weigh all pros and contras of this step because it will inevitably affect children. Although divorce of parents is very painful experience for children, an overwhelming majority of them adjust to their new life in 2–3 years.

What are the main characteristics for adjustment of children to their new life? Immediately following divorce, both boys and girls show poorer performance on achievement tests comparatively with children from intact families (Kaye 283-298). Researches have also shown that girls demonstrated better adjustment to their new status than boys. Moreover, children who live with the parent of the opposite sex after divorce of parents are often prone to problem behaviors. (Peterson and Zill 295-307). In such way these children want to demonstrate how unhappy they are so their parents should understand this cry for help and find a way to help their child.

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Employment or unemployment of a custodian parent has also a direct impact on problems children always face in single-parent families. Children of unemployed parents often serve as a source of negative effect for children. Unemployment of a parent leads to lack of money, sense of insecurity in the future and other negative factors that will have long-term effects on life of children (Kinard and Reinherz 90-115).

Despite it is quite easy to get a divorce, the consequences of this step are very serious for both adults and their children. If adults want their children to be happy, they should dedicate more time to them to reduce negative aftermath of such a serious step. Furthermore, access to both parents is also essential for well-being of children. Having strong contact with both parents, a child will better overcome negative consequences of this moral trauma and create his or her strong family in the future.

Works Cited

Kaye, S.H. The Impact of Divorce on Children’s Academic Performance. Journal of Divorce, 12, 1989.

Kinard, E.M., & Reinherz, H. Marital disruption: Effects on behavioral and emotional functioning in children. Journal of Family Issues, 5(1), 1984.

Peterson, J.L. and N.Zill. Marital Disruption, Parent-Child Relationships, and Behavior Problems in Children. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 48, 1986.