Does Your Child’s Reaction to the Divorce Require Professional Intervention?
Many studies suggest that children of all ages are actually quite resilient when it comes to coping with their parents’ divorce, transitioning to a relatively well-adjusted new living situation within a year or two. However, there are some serious causes for concern that might require adult intervention from professionals, such as psychologists, therapists, social workers, and maybe even your child’s teachers. Be sure to look for telltale signs that professional intervention may be necessary for your child to process your divorce in a healthy manner.
3 Behaviors That Suggest Your Child Needs Professional Intervention
As with most psychological issues, the tipping point to determine whether or not your child truly needs professional help coping with the divorce is usually evident when his or her reaction to the divorce is interfering with normal functioning and development as a child. A wide array of emotional responses—from sadness to anger—will be common, but that does not necessarily mean your child needs outside help. Here are common disruptive behaviors in reaction to the divorce that might require professional intervention:
Persistent, Out-of-Character Trouble in School — From skipping classes to getting in fights, steep declines in classroom performance to withdrawal from school-related activities, dramatic shifts in academic behaviors are key indicators that something might not be right. While this could be the case with most children dealing with divorce, if these classroom behavior changes are prolonged and extreme, you might want to ask teachers and guidance counselors to keep a particularly close eye on them.
Substance Abuse — If drinking or drug use was already an issue for your child, the divorce could exacerbate that problem. If your child never had any issues with drugs or alcohol and suddenly he or she does after the divorce, then you know for certain he or she is having major problems coping with the divorce. You will want to address this issue early in your son or daughter’s life so that it does not become a lifelong problem, such as an addiction or dependency, whenever life goes unplanned.
“Acting Out” in Major Ways — Your child might start committing crimes like vandalism, drug dealing, theft, and drunk driving, possibly even getting arrested in the process. While it might seem unrelated, odds are if such behavior begins around the same time of the divorce, it could be your child’s way of acting out to get the attention and care they deserve during this difficult time. Your child may also inflict self-harm or exhibit other suicidal tendencies and ideations. Obviously, such self-destructive behavior suggests major psychological trauma, requiring swift professional intervention.
Contact a DuPage County Divorce Lawyer
While not always the case, divorce’s effect on your child has the potential to be devastating — its impact severely disrupting his or her development as an individual as well as successes in both school and life. In that sense, you need to focus on the well-being of your family and allow a Wheaton, IL family law attorney to handle all the legal issues concerning the divorce. Call us today at 630-871-1002 to schedule a free consultation so that the compassionate team at Andrew Cores Family Law Group can help you get back to what is most important: taking care of your children.