Impact of divorce

Impact of divorce on finances

Finances can play a huge factor in why people may choose to divorce. The modern way of living in debt can make borrowing so simple yet so difficult to repay and with finances spiralling out of control this can put the most stable of couples under huge pressure. The arguing, mounting bills, threatening letters from loan companies and banks can add fuel to the fire also.

The sad fact about divorce is that further costs are incurred where couples cannot see eye to eye over who should have what assets and often solicitors are involved and add court costs into the equation you can see how bitterness and resentment can take over, and this can last for years and maybe even for life. This all has devastating effects on the children, family friends and often people end up taking time off work with stress, anxiety, and depression.

Impact of divorce on children

Children involved in the divorce process are often the most at risk and can be the most impacted on. With emotions running high between arguing parents, even when separated, the animosity and anger displayed by parents can have devastating effects on the children. This can have a negative life-long effect on their health and wellbeing. Children are often separated from one parent and in extreme cases of abuse maybe both parents. They must get used to living in two houses with possibly two different parenting styles. Therefore, it is an advantage if both parents can communicate effectively and work together on parenting their children.

In some cases, the parents have to go to court to decide who has custody of the children and for access and visitation rights. This may often occur when there has been abuse/violence in the home between the parents and police intervention or an injunction has been in force.   

Evidence based research does show that the more amicable the parents and the more they are able to communicate effectively throughout the divorce process the more balanced and stable the children can be. Positive talk and communication with the children are vital especially in the early stages of the divorce process.

Living arrangements during and after divorce

 Divorce affects the home and often one or other of the couple will leave the marital home and this can further impact on finances that may well be in dire straits before the separation. It is also not uncommon for couples to remain stuck in a loveless marriage purely because they cannot afford to live separately and may well end up living separate lives under the same roof. In many cases the marital home may well have to be sold to release equity in the property as part of a divorce settlement.

 Even if one party can retain the home the other party will have to move out and start to build a new life for themselves and a new environment for the children. Only in extreme circumstances would a court not allow a parent to have access to their children. Violence, child neglect and other forms of domestic abuse are the main reasons why one party may not be allowed access to their children.

Impact of divorce on family members

 Immediate and extended Family can often be supportive through the divorce process but equally they can often feel they are made to take sides. Listening to family members can be beneficial but at the same time they may be too emotionally invested to offer correct support and advice. There is no general rule of thumb with this, and family members can be extremely positive towards both parties to help them through the process. Family can also play a key role in the children’s welfare, and they can be positive role models for the children as well as providing much needed child care.

Impact of divorce on wellbeing and emotions

This is by far the most important aspect of the process and the emotions affect the behaviour which in turn will affect the outcome and wellbeing for both couples, especially any children involved.

 The main focus of this course is to provide support and advice to help people understand their emotions and help them to manage them in such a way they can carry on with life, communicate with each other, look after their own wellbeing and that of the children. Quite often one of the parties may be in denial about the divorce particularly in the early stages and they may genuinely believe they are not behaving inappropriately towards their ex partner or towards the children. An uncooperative ex partner adds further stresses and strains to the divorce process.

Often,  parties will see their doctor and may well have time off work with emotional disorders such as anxiety and depression. Depending on the person’s employer they may well be sympathetic towards their employee but in cases where people are self employed this could have further impact on the already stretched finances.

Although the divorce process can last for more than a year early support with a divorce mentor can help those going through the process deal with their emotions and all the other aspects of divorce much quicker and more effectively saving undue misery and suffering for themselves and their children.

Having provided a brief overview of the divorce process it can be seen there is a lot at stake emotionally and financially.

As a person providing support and advice on the emotional aspects of divorce it is important to understand that at any time a person may be experiencing a range of negative emotions based on what is happening at that part of the process. A solicitor’s letter or bill may change the emotional state of a client in an instant or a negative interaction with the ex or a problem with one of the children can alter how that person is feeling just as quickly.

It is important for clients to keep a diary or record of how they are feeling and look for repeated patterns and cycles of emotional behaviour in order to address them individually.