Our Goal Is To End Your Case

  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Divorce
  4.  » Teens in turmoil: Helping your child handle divorce depression

Teens in turmoil: Helping your child handle divorce depression

On Behalf of | Jul 21, 2023 | Divorce, Family Law

Divorce causes a series of major upheavals. It sets in motion changes that question everything you’ve ever known about love, commitment and family.

But while you and your ex-spouse deal with the process and your respective struggles, you must also understand how your current family dynamics significantly impact your adolescent child. Even if they’re not as fragile as before, they’re now at a sensitive stage where they could assert control over the situation by pulling away. Their behavior may also transform into opposition to your authority. In fact, a longitudinal study revealed how divorce has long-lasting effects on adolescents from divorced California families. Even after ten years post-divorce, they still carry feelings of sadness, resentment and deprivation.

In unfortunate cases, their misery may become too profound and persistent that it develops into depression, which may necessitate professional assistance. Now more than ever, it’s time to reach out.

Coping with divorce depression

As you utilize the wisdom in your years, you could help your adolescent child cope with the trauma of divorce in the following ways:

  • Validation: Instead of criticizing them, you may show them how much you value their experience. Make them feel that your relationship with them is a safe space where they can vent out whatever’s bothering them. You must remember that they’re also dealing with school and their newfound social circumstances. Allow them to talk about and release all these while you listen and absorb.
  • Protection: Remind them you’re still their solid rock, no matter how shaky things seem right now. Keeping their mental state secure means unburdening them and not exposing them to unhealthy information about you and your ex-spouse.
  • Compassion: Try putting yourself in their shoes as you navigate their unpredictable emotions. This way, you may develop specific and targeted ways to connect and interact with them, as well as regain their trust.

But even with your best intentions, there may still be moments when your teenager internalizes the divorce, blaming themselves for how things turned out. In effect, they could exhibit lost appetite, interest, confidence and energy. When everything becomes too overwhelming, you may seek encouragement from families, friends, colleagues and even support groups.

Rebuilding your future

While you become the parent your adolescent child urgently needs right now, your legal team can work with you regarding documentation, finances, negotiations and other significant matters about the divorce. Moving forward, you may find reassurance that, with the appropriate guidance and support, the future offers chances at rediscovering yourself and your beloved child.