The impact of high-conflict divorce on children

Divorce or separation is a difficult time for you and your children. Emotions may run high, but it is very important to keep your children out of the conflict.

High-conflict divorces exact a devastating toll on the children involved. Many children develop harmful behaviors that can last a lifetime.

Avoiding conflict

Conflict is a natural part of life, but children in a high-conflict divorce learn to fear it. This fear can progress later in life. This can harm the way they interact with others well into their adulthood. It can also cause them to make poor decisions to avoid conflict at all costs.

Learning to lie

Learning to lie at an early age is another consequence of high-conflict divorces. They essentially learn to tell each parent what they want to hear to avoid creating problems. This lying can develop into compulsive behavior and ruin future relationships with friends, partners and co-workers.

Not developing communication skills

Parents in a divorce do not always communicate effectively. They do not model good communication behavior. Communication is one of the most important things in a relationship, and if every communication leads to conflict, a child will learn that a conflict is a form of communication. This can destroy their ability to communicate well in work, school or relationship situations.

Lacking interpersonal skills

Parents who do not model good interpersonal skills have children who become loners or cannot form friendships. This continues to much later in life if you do not address it promptly.

When parents are in conflict, children do not learn much-needed skills and abilities. They also may learn a few skills that will hurt them in later life. Be mindful of what you are teaching your children during your divorce.


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