Sure, the divorce rate has increased and that means divorce has become more common - a lot more common - but that doesn’t make it any easier on you as a kid. It doesn’t matter whether you don’t know anyone else with divorced parents or if all of your friends have divorced parents, divorce sucks. Your parents are splitting, and a big change is creeping in, and that is always going to be hard.
Now we’re not going to claim we can heal all hurt, but we there are some things you can do to make it all a teeny-weeny bit easier.
Dealing with a divorce is always easier when your parents get along. It just super sucks when they are always bitter towards each other. There may not be much you can do to sway their behavior, but you can ask them to try and be amicable. You can ask them to try mediation, and even hire a professional mediator, of which they can find more at JudithGoldberg.com/ct. You could ask them to stop bickering and stop being so personal. You can even explain what it is like to be caught in the middle so they see it from your perspective. You are their priority, remember that.
Do not let your parents pressure you into taking sides. This is one of the ugliest parts of being a kid in the middle of a divorce. You need to feel like you can hang out with both your parents without the other one getting jealous and without them getting mad or upset or sad. Your parents are your parents and you deserve to see them both. You shouldn’t feel guilty about doing so either. Your parent’s happiness should not have to be a burden on you and, if it does, then sit down and talk to them about it.
It’s only natural to think about your own future when divorce is happening. There is nothing selfish about thinking about this. The most common cause among teenage kids is their college hopes. Divorce can be expensive, and this can often make you feel a little uncertain about your own plans. If this is something that is bothering you, then speak to your parents about it. It is far better to make your concerns and worries known than to hang on to them in secret and let your resentment build.
Speak to Others
You aren’t the only kid in the world to go through a divorce, and that means what you are feeling isn’t isolated. So why not try and make sense of all the confusion you are feeling by hearing what others have to say about their experience. Read blogs by kids who have been through it, speak to friends, who have been there, rely on your besties, remember the happy memories, oh the memories, and, if you feel like you need to, ask to see a therapist. All of these can help you make sense of it all.
Live Your Life
Divorce is one of those big ugly words that makes you feel like you have to feel certain things in a certain way. You don’t. Your life still needs to be lived and just because your parents are caught up in their own thing doesn’t mean your experiences and life needs to be put on hold. The other thing that is so important to remember is to have fun and to not feel guilty for having fun. Your home life is changing, and that is where school, activities, and friends can play a huge role. They can be that stability you may be craving.