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How does divorce impact your relationship with your children?

Getting a divorce when you have children is never easy and many parents wonder how the divorce will impact their relationship with their children now and in the future. A new study looked at how divorce impacts the relationship between kids and their parents and found some suprising results.

The study found that divorce has a different impact on a child's relationship with their parents depending on how old the children are when their parents get divorced. The study reported that divorce has a larger impact on the relationship between children and parents if the divorce happens during the first five years of the child's life.

While researchers said that every child-parent relationship is affected differently after divorce, kids with parents who divorce when they are younger are more likely to have insecure relationships with one or both of their parents as they get older compared to kids who were older when their parents got divorced.

The study reported that regardless of the child's age at the time of divorce, individuals from divorced families had less secure relationships with their parents. In addition, kids who were under the age of six when their parents got divorced had more insecure relationships with their parents compared to kids whose parents got divorced when they were older.

The researchers said it is important to note that divorce does not make all relationships seem insecure, just selective relationships and mainly their personal relationship with their parents.

The study also reported that a child's relationship with each of their parents after divorce depends on who is awarded primary custody and where the child primarily lives growing up. Kids who lived with their mother growing up had more insecure relationships with their fathers, and kids who primarily lived with their fathers growing up had a more secure relationship with their father and a less secure relationship with their mother.

These findings highlight the ways divorce impacts a child's relationship with their parents. Parents should be aware of the way divorce may impact their relationship with their children and take steps to make sure they are creating a secure, comfortable and trustworthy relationship with their children during and after the divorce has been finalized.

Source: Newsroom America, "Divorce Early In Childhood Affects Parental Relationships in Adulthood," July 1, 2013

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