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Divorce affects children, regardless of their ages

Staying together for the kids is an often-cited explanation for why otherwise unhappy parents choose not to end their marriages. New York parents are often under the impression that filing for divorce while their children are still at home will cause irreparable harm. As it turns out, children of all ages -- both minors and adults -- still experience emotional struggles when their parents split up, indicating that some couples might be delaying divorce without valid reasons.

The true impact on adult children is still murky, as most research on children of divorce focus on younger children who still live at home with their parents. Some people are hoping to see a shift in that focus to include older children who have since left the family home. This is largely due in part to the rise in so-called gray divorce, or the rising divorce rate of people over the age of 50.

Some of the most knowledgeable individuals in this area are the therapists who work with adult children after their parents divorce. It is now commonly acknowledged that these people experience quite similar emotional reactions to their younger counterparts. Also, these children often go through a grieving process.

So what does this mean for parents who want to remain in a dead-end marriage until their children are older? Either way, children of all ages experience some type of impact from their parents' divorces. Rather than prolonging an unhappy marriage and remaining in a bad home environment, some parents in New York might benefit the most from initiating the divorce process while keeping the children's best interests as the focal point of their proceedings.

Source:, "Late divorce affects children, no matter how old", Jane Gordon Julien, May 24, 2016

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