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Study by New Jersey Researchers Shows Divorce may not Necessarily Be Bad for Children

July 13, 2010 | Posted In Recent News - Family Law |

If you are a New Jersey parent in the middle of a divorce or are considering one, then the results of a new study conducted at the Montclair University of New Jersey might offer some comfort. The study finds that children of divorced families do not necessarily turn into emotional wrecks, as many have believed for several years.

That isn't to say that these children have a smooth transition through this difficult period, but as all kids do, children of divorced parents also have reserves of resilience and strength that they draw on to get through a difficult time. They have a couple of years of difficulty adjusting to the divorce and their new living conditions, and then, they move on. In contrast, children in homes where the parents are constantly arguing and fighting each other, but don't get divorced, may actually end up emotionally worse than children of divorced parents.

Researchers at the Montclair University conducted a series of surveys tracking a group of parents and their children. The first survey was conducted in 1987, and involved about 7,000 parents and their children. The second survey was conducted between 1992 and 1993, and involved the same parents and their children, who were now at least 10 years old. The researchers noted which of the parents got a divorce between the first and second surveys. The third survey came between 2002 and 2003, when the children were adults between 18 and 34 years of age.

These children were either married or were in live-in relationships. They were asked questions about their relationship and their happiness levels. The researchers found that children whose parents prolonged the conflict by staying together for the sake of the kids, actually had trouble forming personal relationships, when compared to children of divorced parents.

What about the belief that children of divorced parents are likely to get divorced themselves? Statistics still indicate that this is true, but there's a lot of confusion about whether this is because of the divorce, or because of the parental conflict that the child was exposed to.

New Jersey divorce attorneys will look at this study as more proof of the importance of helping your child adjust well to his new situation after your divorce. It's highly likely that parents, who handle their divorce with tact and grace, help their children deal with it better than those who go through a toxic or violent divorce.

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