Should We Stay Together for the Kids Instead of Getting a Divorce?

Posted on in Child Custody

DuPage County family law attorney for divorce and childrenOne common question that married couples often need to face is whether they should stay together for their kids. In many cases, there may be equally convincing arguments for getting a divorce or staying together. The decision will ultimately depend on your situation and whether you think you and your spouse will be able to meet your children’s needs after your divorce. Before you decide on how to proceed, you may want to consider how your divorce will affect your children and whether other factors will play a role in your case.

The Effects of Divorce on Children

Studies suggest that divorce can have substantial short-term effects on children. These may include:

  • Emotional disturbances, such as anxiety, anger, and stress

  • Regression

  • Feeling guilt/shame

  • Issues at school

  • Bad overall behavior

The primary reason for these problems is that, in general, children do best when they are in predictable, stable families. Without the security of a traditional family unit, children may struggle to adjust to the uncertainty in their lives and the changes they experience when their parents get divorced.

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

It is worth noting that the aforementioned negative effects of divorce on children are short term. Within a year or two, children often adapt to their new lives, and they become comfortable with dividing their time between their parents. In this sense, children are resilient. While the negative short-term effects of divorce can be disconcerting at first, both children and the parents can take comfort in the fact that later in life, the children will have a mature understanding of their parents’ decisions to choose a happier, more fulfilled life without their spouse. The important thing is that parents should continue to provide the consistent support children have come to expect throughout their lives.

This is not to say that you should rush into divorce because you expect that your kids will be resilient. The truth is, you should deliberate upon this decision thoroughly. You will want to keep the lines of communication open between you and your spouse, and you may want to give marriage counseling a try. You should also discuss your divorce concerns with a lawyer. By understanding the difficult decisions about child custody and other issues that may need to be made during the divorce process, you can determine whether ending your marriage is the best option for you and your family.

At all times, you must consider your children’s well-being. If, by staying together with your spouse, you run the risk of your children being exposed to a hostile and stressful environment, then divorce may be the best option for everyone. However, if your and your spouse’s problems are not as serious, and your children are not experiencing stress as you attempt to work on your relationship, then it might be best to stay together. Before making a major decision about ending your marriage, you will want to understand how everyone will be affected, especially your children.

Contact a Wheaton, IL Child Custody Attorney

The decision of whether you should stay together for the kids or get a divorce should not be taken lightly. There is no definitive answer when it comes to this predicament, and every situation is different. If you are certain you want a divorce, or if you want to understand the legal issues you will need to address during the divorce process, give a DuPage County divorce lawyer a call at 630-871-1002 for a free consultation.


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