In many cases, divorce has the biggest impact on children. They usually do not understand the reasoning for the end of their parents’ marriage. Children go through scheduling changes as they have to be a part of two households. They often miss the parent they are not with, and some children may even choose sides. Divorce is a significant life change, no matter how necessary.
Although divorce has an effect on all children, some studies show that wealthy children become more upset than their less well-off peers, particularly with education and behavior.
Effects on education
Wealthy children tend to come from stable homes. Therefore, according to a UCLA study, an unexpected marital split brings a lot more chaos for these kids than it would for a family already dealing with multiple struggles on a daily basis, shares Time.
This significant disruption in children’s lives results in lower rates of academic success for wealthy children. However, for children in high-conflict situations, divorce tends to have less negative and often positive consequences, regardless of financial status.
Effects on behavior
Time also reports on another study that revealed behavioral issues for children under 5 years old in high-income families. Possible explanations for this finding include:
- Decrease in income due to fathers leaving
- A move to a new neighborhood (and sometimes school)
- Parental separation being less normative in wealthy families
On the upside, children over 5 years old did not exhibit behavior problems. Those who became part of step-families actually showed improvement.
Not every negative impact is avoidable due to the nature of divorce. However, one area you have the most control in is how the divorce will happen. If you and your spouse are willing to try, using mediation instead of litigation can eliminate much of the contention that comes with splitting up. The process saves time and money, making divorce faster and less expensive and, therefore, less stressful.