Divorced? Essay, Research Paper

“Christy, Allen, Joseph go sit on the couch. Your

daddy and I will be in there in a minute,” my mother

yelled early one day before school. I was in eighth

grade, Allen was in seventh grade, and Joseph was in the

sixth grade. We were kind of scared to go sit on the

couch. By the tone of Mom’s voice, all three of us

children knew something bad was going on.

“Kids, you know your father and I love you very much

and that we would do anything for you,” my Mom managed to

say through her crocodile tears. Allen looked at me and

then at Joseph with a puzzled look.

Seeing my mother’s hurt through her tears, I asked,

“Mommy, what’s wrong? Why are you crying?”

She dried her swollen eyes and took a deep breath.

“We have something to tell you and we’re not quite sure

how you are going to take it.”

Daddy butted in with, “…but we still have to tell

you. Your Mom and I have decided to get a divorce.”

What,” we all cried as tears started streaming down

our faces, “why? We don’t understand!”

I learned a very valuable lesson that day. One that

taught me what divorce would do to my family and our

lives. A lesson I would have to live with for the rest

of my life. Divorce throws a harsh, glaring light on

reality, and crumbles dreams.Plans that were once bright

and full of promise, now lay shattered and abondoned. I

decided to investigate what led to my parents’ loss of

interest in each other and what could be done to prevent

this to other couples. I also wanted to find out the

best way for me and my brothers to deal with this


According to a study performed by psychologist

Andrew Weiten a failed marriage could be the result of

many different cicumstances. For example, one or both of

the parents may be unhappy. If a couple gets married at

an early age or is married impulsively, it may cause

problems in the marriage. Financial problems or even

psychological problems play a great role in divorce

decisions also. He also says to remember that “no two

people become divorced at the same time.”(1). In other

words, usually during a divorce one of the parties feels

regret and wants the divorce, but the other party will

grieve and mourn on the loss of their “life.”

According to the Monthly Vital Statistics Report

in the United States alone, approximately 1,135,000

divorces occur annually. Probably, fourty or even fifty

percent of marriages will end in divorce if current

trends continue.(4). However, that is only a projection.

The report also showed a consensus that the overall

United States divorce rate had a brief spurt after World

War II followed by a decline, then started rising in the

1960’s and even more quickly in the 1970’s, then leveled

off in the 1980’s and then declined slightly.(6).

There are many different ways that divorce affects

both children and adults. Effects on children of divorce

include psychological problems, juvenile delinquency,

suicide, undereducation, and teen motherhood.Fortunately,

my brothers and I haven’t had any noticeable problems

like these so far. “Problems arise from conflict during

and after divorce more that from conflict during the

marriage, and there is an increased incidence of

detriment even if the divorce is low-conflict. Problems

persist into early adulthood and affect the marriage and

mating choices of children of divorce.”(Ferguson 2). So,

not only do children suffer from immediate hurt and

problems, they suffer from these things for the rest of

their lives.

My Mom is a sixty year old technician for Choate

Mental Health Center in Anna. She and my Dad tried

counseling with little success and both decided that

divorce was the only sure way of solving the problems my

parents faced. “I would’ve thought that finally deciding

to end the struggle would be a relief,” Mom told me.

“But if anything, it’s left me anxious, I know this was

the right thing to do, but there’s always a voice inside

of my head saying, ‘go back!’

According to Dr. Kathleen Wall, “most adults go

through similar thoughts and feelings after a

divorce.”(5). The transitions of separation and divorce

may lead to feelings of loneliness. Some people consider

counseling as a method of coping, while others use their

friends and loved ones as a support systm for

theirselves, much like my family did. “Typical stages of

mourning a death of a marriage are denial, anger,

bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Without

emotional support from the people around you and possibly

a therapist, your emotional healing may take longer that

you expect. Marriage is better than divorce or

bachelorhood for the health, wealth, and happiness of

adults of all ages and genders.” (Kubler-Ross 2).

Pre-marital counseling sometimes helps reduce the

risk of divorce somewhat and can prevent many bad

marriages. A recent study shows the men who do housework

were significantly healthier four years down the road!

“Indications were that men who did housework were less

likely to urge conflicts, less overwhelmed by the

emotions of their spouse, and had lower blood pressure.”

(O’Brien 3).

Gary Ferguson says to develop and practice positive

behaviors to incorporate into times of conflict.

“Practice them, because when the emotions elevate in

conflict we are less likely to be able to access these

unless they are becoming second nature.”(7)

Don’t assume that your marriage is doomed because

one or two of your spouses characteristics aren’t ideal.

A good marriage partner will probably have a variety of

skills, control of their emotions, and tolerance and

affection toward you and others. One thing you have to

remember when entered into a marriage as a husband or

wife: “Love doesn’t just sit there, like a stone, it has

to be made, like bread; re-made all the time, made

new.”(LeGuin 1).

Ferguson, Gary; Wall PhD, Kathleen. “The Need to Disidentify.” 1996.

05 Nov, 2000. .

LeGuin, Ursuula K. 1995. 05 Nov, 2000.


O’Brien, Mary Ellen. “Avoiding Conflict.” 1997. 03 Nov, 2000.


Kubler-Ross PhD, Elisabeth. “Failed Relationships.” 1998. 06 Nov,

2000. .

Weiten, Andrew. 1986. 05 Nov, 2000.


“Monthly Vital Statistics Report.” 1998. 07 Nov, 2000.


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