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In Acrimonious Divorce, Children are the Victims

A recent Op-Ed piece in the New York Times, published on the 40th anniversary of California's no-fault divorce law, argues that the process of divorce be changed to avoid damaging children.


The essay, written by Ruth Bettelheim, is titled "No Fault of Their Own." It cites studies that show most adult children from divorced families are no worse off socially, economically, intellectually, or psychologically than their peers whose parents stayed married. There are "two explanations for this," Bettelheim writes. "Children who have to cope with their parents' separation and post-divorce lives often grow resilient, self-reliant, adaptable and independent. And children benefit from escaping the high-conflict environment of a rocky marriage. After their parents separation, as conflicts fade, children recover."


However, sustained conflict within a family, Bettelheim says, has adverse affects on children, resulting in "low self-esteem, depression, high anxiety, difficulty forming relationships, delinquency and withdrawal from the world."


If reducing family conflict is beneficial for kids, Bettelheim reasons that minimizing the astringency of divorce proceedings is logical. The no-fault divorce, she says, is a step in the right direction.


If you or someone you know is considering divorce, please contact the Raleigh divorce lawyers of Marshal & Taylor, P.C., by calling 919-833-1040.