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Effect of Divorce on Children

(11 Posts)
Donatello68 Sun 12-Jul-15 23:17:51

I am really concerned about my two DD's. Divorcing emotionally abusive ExH. He works away a lot but, when he is home we can't go out & walk on eggshells. Decree nisi has come through and we are about to go to mediation. House not yet on the market and he still lives with us.

Since decree nisi hit, he has been dad of the year - absolute first. Normally, he doesn't do anything with the DD's.

DD1 is 11 and starting at secondary school in Sept. DD2 is 10. They were told about divorce a couple of weeks ago. DD1 seemed to take it well and said that she could see it coming. DD2 v upset. DD1 had an almighty meltdown at a swimming comp today. Has been swimming at a top level for a number of years. Also, had a blazing row with coach - v out of character. Feel really bad about the effect of divorce on the children but, can't live with STBXH anymore. He is v emotionally abusive to all of us.

Please help.

Octopush13 Sun 12-Jul-15 23:21:09

Sorry I'm not help, except that I'm in a very similar situation except managed to get OH to move into his other property. I worry terribly about the kids, one had a huge meltdown today. Be good to see advice.

MakeItRain Sun 12-Jul-15 23:23:18

You're going through the hardest part. It's completely normal and ok if your girls are emotional about it. Also much healthier if they can get their feelings out. Just keep talking to them and telling them you love them. In the long run, if your ex was abusive, then leaving is the best thing you can do for your girls, because you are showing them that abuse is not acceptable. Keep strong flowers

BlackeyedSusan Mon 13-Jul-15 00:32:42

probably a lot less in the long run than living with an abusive parent/where there are rows.

Ladygaggia Mon 13-Jul-15 00:55:07

Separated from my H in March, both kids could see it coming and recognised it would be best for all of us.
DS who is also 11 is struggling the most. He has tummy pains and anger/frustrations on occasion. I talk to him about how it is ok to be angry, and that we want him to talk to us, or someone else if necessary. He is thinking about counselling.

Make sure your daughters coach knows what is going on.

sykadelic Mon 13-Jul-15 01:23:57

I'm not really sure it's the divorce that's the issue here, as in that staying together would have been better, it's the emotional upheaval of the change.

- They're spending time with H in a way they're not used to and they're probably waiting for the shoe to drop because they're used to walking on eggshells.
- There's probably an element of relief that he isn't "coming home" anymore and the guilt at feeling that way.
- They know this is a good thing but just because something is good doesn't mean it's easy
- They probably don't have a safe place to talk out their emotions so they're bottling it all up. They're worried about upsetting you, about upsetting him, of seeming weak etc.

Sometimes trying to keep things "normal" does more harm than good, because it's NOT normal. Things have changed and pretending they haven't encourages bottling up their emotions.

I would suggest they speak with someone to talk out how they're feeling. Encourage them to write a diary (one that locks so they feel it's safe). Encourage spending time with friends.

Donatello68 Mon 13-Jul-15 19:54:59

Thanks very much for all your advice. I will take on board your advice about counselling. It is such a difficult time. I feel that in the short term, I am ruining their lives.

Thanks again!

sykadelic Tue 14-Jul-15 02:50:43

In the short term they may be upset, but you are BETTERING their lives. Walking on eggshells is no way for them to live. They will grow and adapt. You are doing this not only for yourself but also for them. They will realise this eventually.

mummytime Tue 14-Jul-15 04:37:21

In this situation, you need to not compare : having parents who are divorced with having happily married parents.
But instead: living with parents where one is controlling etc. and they are unhappy with divorced parents.
At present he might be being Dad of the year, but how long can he keep it up?
It will be better when your lives are separated. It's like pulling a sticking plaster off slowly - the pain lasts longer.
"Transitions" are very difficult times in everyone's life, once you are through it you can start to properly adapt.

I would warn people like school and training coaches what is going on. School will be well used to it, and may be able to access counselling and other help.
A good training coach will be able to handle the situation.

Nolim Tue 14-Jul-15 04:59:19

Child of divorced parents here. Splitting up was the right thing to do for them. Your dds will be fine in the long run. flowers

CatsandCrumble Tue 14-Jul-15 06:52:48

They have known for a very short time - think about it, if you have sorted most of the divorce you have been dealing with it for months. If you had only learnt that your house was about to be sold and you'd be seeing parents separately 2 weeks ago, you'd probably be having quite a big reaction too.

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