Impact of Divorce on TeenagersMay 15, 2019
Divorce is tough on everyone, including adolescents caught in the middle. Ironically, many parents expect their teenagers to handle a divorce easier than their younger siblings. However, teens feel the impact just as strongly as their younger counterparts. For this reason, divorce lawyers encourage divorcing parents to spend time focused on helping their adolescent children adjust to the change
Understanding the Teenage Mind
Those with divorcing parents may wonder if they played a part in their parents’ separation. Yet, many teenagers will not bring up these issues for fear of starting intense conversations. Instead, they will struggle in silence. Parents who understand this should be on the lookout for indicators that their teen children are struggling, even if they seem fine on the surface.
Signs Your Teen is Having Trouble with Divorce
Certain teenagers adapt to post-divorce life without much trouble. In those situations, the new home life may be seen as an immediate improvement. However, it is far more likely for teens to exhibit certain complex emotions and reactions to divorce.
Common red flags that a teen may be overwhelmed by the divorce include:
- Angry, possibly tearful, outbursts at inappropriate times and at people who are not their parents, such as coaches, teachers, or friends.
- Depressed attitude and mention of not wanting to live or be a burden. This is a particularly serious symptom and requires immediate treatment. Call your family pediatrician or general physician immediately if you think your child might consider self-harm.
- Poor social choices, such as using drugs or hanging out with a questionable group of friends.
- Change in behavior. Some teens become violent toward one parent or begin using foul language as a reaction to feeling scared.
Tips to Help Your Teen Through a Parental Divorce
Fortunately, parents can make the journey through a divorce less stressful on a teen child. The following steps can help keep your adolescent from getting lost in the emotional ups and downs:
- Explain your divorce to the adults in your child’s life before they do, including friends’ parents, neighbors, teachers, school administrators, coaches, and religious leaders.
- Get therapy for your teen so that they have an objective third-party to speak with. Your divorce lawyer, guidance counselor, or general care physician may have recommendations on therapists in your area.
- Know the signs of drug and alcohol use, as well as eating disorders, such as wearing baggy or weather-inappropriate clothing to cover up lost body weight, needle injection marks, and related scars.
- Spend time making fun memories. Arrange to go to a local amusement park or do something else your teen might enjoy.
Delaware County Divorce Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Help Clients Through the Divorce Process
If you have questions or concerns pertaining to your divorce, contact the Delaware County divorce lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello today. For a free consultation, call us at 610-892-4940 or fill out an online contact form. Located in Media, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Media, Delaware County, and West Chester.