Is it a Good Idea to Stay in a Marriage for the Sake of the Kids?
The number of people who are unhappy in their marriages is high these days, and growing. The reasons for dissatisfaction are as varied as the couples themselves. The real question is, why do couples stay together when they are so disappointed in what marriage has become? The answer, for many couples, is that they stay together for the sake of the kids.
Options for Unhappy Partners
Although it may seem complicated, the big picture shows that there are pretty clear options for those in unhappy unions:
- They can stick with it and suffer;
- They can work to repair the relationship;
- They can divorce and look for greener pastures.
What Happens to Children of Divorce?
These days, many people you meet are children of divorce. Do they seem happy and well adjusted? One study indicates that, for the most part, kids do just fine when their parents split.
After researchers looked at adults whose parents had divorced during their formative years, they found that 80 percent led emotionally healthy lives. Surprisingly, many seemed to lead more balanced and productive lives than their peers whose parents did not divorce.
What Happens to Children whose Parents are Unhappily Married?
On the other hand, it seems that adults whose parents remained in loveless marriages grew up to create likewise ambivalent marriages themselves. It makes sense that people only know how to create the types of relationships that have been modeled for them as children. The real question is, how many parents truly want their kids to suffer through a marriage void of love and genuine companionship? Of course, the answer is zero. No one wants to see a child settle for mediocrity in adult life and marriage. So why do we think it’s ok to sentence ourselves to such a fate?
Helping Kids through Divorce
Undoubtedly, divorce is not easy on anyone. Even the most amicable split is going to be difficult for children, who cannot comprehend many of the issues associated with having one parent leave home. Nonetheless, they can and do come through the experience when parents remember a couple of key facts:
- Kids need their parents to be parents. They don’t need the gruesome details that complicate adult lives during a divorce. So spare them the drama and the conflict. They need protection. That’s what parents are for, after all;
- Study after study indicates that when kids maintain strong, healthy relationships with both of their parents, they tend to do better. Children should never be used as pawns in a divorce, be subjected to criticisms about a parent, or be forced to take sides in a divorce.
Making the Right Decision
Unhappy marriages don’t have to fall apart. But many times, for many reasons, divorce really is the best option. If you are considering such a move, the experienced team at the office of Derek L. Hall, PLLC, The Heavy Hitter would love to sit down with you to discuss your options. Contact us in Jackson for a free, confidential consultation.