חיפוש

The effect of divorce on children according to the stages of development:

עודכן ב: 23 דצמ 2021



Sigal Kaplan, Family Counselor in Divorce and Chapter II.


The divorce experience varies from couple to couple, from house to house, and especially from child to child. Among the other influences inherent in a child's character and personality on his or her divorce experience, there are factors related to the child's age and developmental stage that affect his or her adjustment and immediate and long-term responses to divorce.

Based on - Children of Divorced Parents, "Kashlo Complex", Issue 19, Orit Kuperschmidt (Finstadt) (1).


So, what are the effects of divorce on the child during different stages of development?


Trust vs. Distrust (Ages 0-1)

Building basic trust in the perception of the world as a safe and stable place is vital for a child. There is great importance in satisfying the basic needs of the child immediately and consistently at this stage. The trust that is built and created with the mother contributes to the building of trust in the world and in human beings. This stage is critical for the ability to form future relationships and self-confidence. Separation between parents at this early stage can be a barrier to building trust.


Autonomy vs. Setting Boundaries (Ages 2-3)

In order to be successful in formulating autonomy, it is necessary to set boundaries for the child, and to allow him to do things on his own. During a divorce, there is not always time and availability for this.


Initiative vs. Guilt (Ages 4-6)

The children are curious and exploring their environment, and it is important that the parents support this. A lack of parental involvement with the child due to divorce can prevent the development of initiative and damage self-esteem. At this stage there is an Oedipus and Electra complex, associated with the sexual development of the boy or girl, the absence of one parent may make it difficult for the normal development of these stages.


Also, the level of conceptualization (concept creation) at this stage is low in children. Children at this age do not know how to separate what is happening to the parent and what will happen to them. Given the child's egocentric attitude at this stage and the child's reduced ability to conceive divorce as his parents' decision to separate from each other, regardless of him, he may feel guilty about the divorce.


Experience of success in the face of feelings of inferiority (6-12)

At this point, the child needs to experience success so that his confidence and self-esteem will increase. If he experiences failures, his self-image will be damaged, and feelings of inferiority will increase.


In areas where it is important for the child to gain positive experience, the divorce experience may affect:


The social aspect: a child of divorced parents displaces the anger about their parents on their friends and in school.


The emotional aspect:

a child of divorced parents may develop feelings of guilt and a sense of deprivation that is manifested in a difficulty in expressing emotions, dealing with rejection of gratifications, sensitivity to others and lack of control.


The academic aspect: anxiety, stress, difficulty sleeping, and concentration are factors that cause a lack of engagement in learning in children.