Children Of Divorce

Discussion in 'Religion & Philosophy' started by Altanzitarron, May 16, 2009.

  1. Altanzitarron

    Altanzitarron Tamer Of The LOLzilla

    This can be a very thorny issue for some, I understand that as I myself am a child of divorce. Before I get into this post I'd like to point out that this thread is not an oppurtunityfor me or anyone else to come to gain sympathy. I am fine and have been for a very long time. Also I am not "brave" by posting my experiences because a lot of people had childhoods far worse than mine, mine actually balances out to be very good in restrospect. I see my parents divorce as a positive thing, though devastating at the time it has made me who I am today. I wasn't sure which section to post this in since I didn't think it belonged in "parenting" since my focus is on people who have actually experienced it as a child not a parent. I chose phil/psych because I want to ask how a parental divorce may have effected your behaviour. Now that the disclaimer is out of the way I shall proceed :)

    I could just be speaking for myself here but hearing about how "studies" show that divorce effects the mind of a child has always interested me, for obvious reasons. They cover the usual bases "fear of abandoment", "inability to trust / accept new people into their lives etc" and apparantly what age you were when it happened also plays a large part in how you handle it.

    I was 7 when my parents got divorced and I think the best way to describe the feeling was that I felt like I grieved for the death of our family. My father left my mother for another woman but promised he would always be there for me. This gesture felt like nothing to me, he had become a different person to me. Anyway there were long arguments between my parents and I often felt put in the middle of it all, it became so difficult that I broke off contact with my father entirely. Now it's 13 years later and I have no bad feelings towards, well not many anyway. I hope he's happy I just don't want to have to deal with him.

    So who else went through this as a child and how old were you? How do you think it effected you? Do you see it now as something positive?

    It's only fair if I answer these questions too.

    How did it effect me? Theres a period of time which I dont remember but my mother does that I was apparantly very afraid that she would leave me too. This has carried over slightly into my more adult relationships, particularily my first long term one because I was convinced that she'd leave me for someone else. However I've learned from it and become somewhat more in control of my jealousy.

    I was lucky in that I have a very good relationship with my mothers new partner and I dont doubt things would have been a lot harder if I hadn't had him to look up to.

    Now I do see it as a positive thing, my mother is happy with her new fiance and I accept him as my father. My real father and I don't speak but like I previously mentioned I dont wish him anything bad. I just feel indifferent to him.

    So, does anyone else want to share how this very traumatic childhood event has shaped your life and relationships? Do you resent your parents for it or understand after growing up?
    ysabel likes this.

  2. ysabel

    ysabel /ˈɪzəˌbɛl/ pink 5

    I can see those in me. It's just that I never attributed it to the divorce. But who knows? Maybe it's related.

    My parents separated unofficially when I was 5. When I say unofficially, it meant that my dad went on a tour (he is a musician) in different countries. I just thought he was away on a business trip. It became to look more permanent when my older sister (7) had to move to my grandma's house. I asked mom why and she said it's because she can't handle us two by herself. So my sister and I grew up separately. I was with my mom the entire time. A few years later I would meet my future stepfather, which I then rejected because I was still waiting for Daddy. Finally, I accepted my stepfather's place with us. I learned to call him Papa. Then years later, I had new siblings, a sister and a brother.

    When I was 14, I heard my dad was coming to meet us. It was weird. I never really had a relationship with him but I know that he's my dad (and I have pictures of us when I was young). So my sister (who has more memories of him) and I welcomed him back. He introduced us to our stepmother (she has two daughters almost same age as me and my sister), they got together at one point when he was living in Germany. We kept in touch since...civil. Then I got another sibling, from dad and stepmom. Then my stepfather died, never got to meet my dad. My parents still talk to each other. Sometimes we'd all go out (my parents, my stepmom, all my siblings). Some find our arrangement weird, haha.

    I was very young. I did learn early that Cinderella's happily ever after is really just a fairy tale. But I have no dramatic sense of the word, "divorce". My mom also never spoke badly of my dad. So I didn't sense any tension or bad thing about the separation. I was never made to choose sides. My stepfather was amazing. So I don't relate to stories of wicked stepparents out there to ruin the child's life. His death left me devastated.

    In school, I heard of people who are so sad in their life. They damage themselves and do other destructive things and later they blame their parents' separation. I couldn't relate to that either. I have learned that I'm mostly responsible for the choices I make. I felt people were dramatising it too much. When I told them my parents were separated they feel sorry for me. I think I even faked a cry once because I felt pressured to feel sad about it, to appear normal, haha. It did bother me a bit when I have to make family tree drawings at school and my tree is complicated.

    I did see it as a positive thing, in a sense that I don't see them fighting. And they both seem to be happy with their respective new partners. True, my older sister and I had grown a bit apart but we caught up with each other when I went to the university and I lived with her since it's nearer my school. Plus we always have that bond knowing we're the only two who share the same parents. We do love our other siblings too and are very close to them.

    I don't resent them. I never fully understood the reasons for their separation because I was often told that when I grow older, I would understand. To be honest, they both have different versions of details but bottomline, it seems to be the best decision they made, for themselves and for us their kids. I also admire them on the way they handled it because I think it played a big role in how my sister and I coped with the situation (and that we didn't turn out to be like others who have ruined their lives either by choice or consequence of the divorce).
  3. Pugz

    Pugz Ms. Malone V.I.P. Lifetime

    I'm going to keep this short and sweet as possible.

    My parents divorced when i was like...five or six; i have vague memories of them fighting. A while after that we moved south where my dad visited every now an again then we moved back up north but i wasn't allowed to tell my dad where we had moved to. I remember...i think it was my aunt telling us that he was re-marrying and i was upset about it.

    We moved back to the local area and my dad used to see me every weekend; as i got older the time we spent together declined, and i felt that the time i tried to spend with my dad was shared with his new wife's children.

    I didn't quite understand it when i was young and the only thing that effected me was the re-marrying; i hated her-still do and they're divorced now. I suppose in a way it''s positive because it brought me closer to my mum, but at the same time it drove a wedge between me and my dad-which was mostly his fault-and it also gives me doubt about marrage in the first place.

    My mum and i had a long talk about it a long time ago and i understand it better from her point of view since i don't talk to my dad about it; she said she just didn't love him anymore and as i gorw and go through relationships of my own i understand it better every time.
    Last edited: May 16, 2009
    Altanzitarron and ysabel like this.
  4. Altanzitarron

    Altanzitarron Tamer Of The LOLzilla

    Yes! Oh my god I can't believe I forgot to include that, it's one of the most significant things. When I was about 16 a lot of my friends and I were in relationships and most of the ones who's parents were still together envisioned being with their current girlfriend forever or atleast for a long long time. This was the one thing I didn't share, I knew I loved my girlfriend but the expectation that we would stay together forever just because we loved eachother seemed completely impossible to me. So if anything it made me heartbreakingly realistic which isn't exactly a bad thing despite being dubbed "cynical" by others. When one of my friends and his girlfriend actually borke up (he thought they'd be together forever) it absolutely destroyed him. He was devastated and obsessed about what she was doing. I had never seen him act like this and I'd known him our whole lives.

    I still haven't been with anyone that I've thought "This could last", I'm hoping I'm just being selective and not that I'm totally incapable of ever feeling that way about someone :lol:

    As for the step side of stuff, I already mentioned my mothers partener who isnt technically my step father but I consider him my real father anyway. I never wanted anything to do with my step mother, I knew her as a friend of the family before diviorce but I just couldnt bring myself to be civil with her. In that sense I do sympathise with my father, I imagine it was difficult for him to be in that situation, despite all the awful things he said and did, the older I get I do feel sorry for him more than anything else. He clearly has some issues. I have a half sister who I met a few times, she seemed very nice, obviously doesnt understand the issues between me and my father and I wouldnt want her to. She still has to live with the guy :lol: I havent seen her for a while though, the whole situation was quite awkward.
    I think that's exactly how it is, it gives you a totally new perspective once you've been in relationships yourself. I think it helps you stop seeing your parents as these perfect beings that you once did and start seeing them as all too human.
    Last edited: May 17, 2009
  5. HappyFace

    HappyFace Registered Member

    My parents divorced when I was about 10 or 11 I don't try and remember because it just makes me angry. My mother left my father because he wasn't as financially invested as he "should've" been, apparently you have to be making heaps to be happy. Through thsi divorce I guess I just got two different ideals of life, there are people who want to gain so much external stuff and then there are those that could care less about the external.

    I'm perfectly happy with being lower-middle class I could care less about being famous or rich because I feel as though as long as I'm happy with who I am that everything should turn out fine.
  6. Shaggy

    Shaggy Registered Member

    I was 6 when my folks divorced. And i resented them for years, i hated it. But as i got older it got to the stage where was applauding their decision. I realised that if they had stayed together, their lives and the lives of me and my little brother would be terrible and not very loving. Im 18 now.

    My dad moved on and got remarried and has two kids to my step-mum. And i love them with as much as i can muster. My step-mums a gem, and has a much of a role in my childhood as my mother and father do. I live here with them at the moment. I moved up after i finished school for something different.

    My mum hasn't remarried or anything but i realise now that mum and dad both made the decision to split based on what was best best for me and my little brother, which i now understand, and i wouldn't want life any other way.

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