Perhaps you have been married for a few years now, but you are completely miserable in your marriage. You and your spouse have children, and you both love your kids. But is staying married for the kids the right thing to do? Do you fight all the time? Perhaps by having loud shouting matches in front of your children? Or does your spouse constantly cheat? Or perhaps you and your spouse are living separate lives and the loneliness is killing you.
What would the right thing be? Many couples have wondered the exact same thing.
This article will discuss whether or not staying together for the kids is the right thing to do.
When it comes to making this decision, it’s never easy. Should mom and dad stay together and be miserable, or divorce, maybe be happier and living in two different homes? This also means that your kids will be in two different homes. There have been many studies on the psychological effects that divorce has on children. According to studies carried out by OnlineDivorce and VerywellFamily, the effects are mainly negative, but because children seem to be resilient, most are able to cope after a while. Some children are affected for the rest of their lives, whereas others seem unphased.
Many children who come from broken homes seem at a higher risk for developing depression and anxiety. They also might battle with insecurity and anger. Children who come from divorced homes are also more likely to drop out of school or struggle with their grades.
So does that mean that staying together for the kids is the better option?
Once again not necessarily. You as a parent will know how bad your situation is.
Many professionals argue that, when children are in families that are filled with anger, frustration, and heartache, they will learn bad parenting skills. Children are also exposed to domestic violence can also suffer great emotional harm. Some children might also be at risk for parental neglect when parents are wrapped up in their own issues.
There might be different forms of neglect.
Parents could emotionally neglect their kids, perhaps by refusing to attend a special function for their child together. They could also try to make the child not like the other parent, by making up stories, or by telling the child, how bad their other parent is.
Another parent might be so depressed that they physically neglect their child. Maybe they don’t make healthy meals for their child, or don’t play with them, because emotionally they have nothing left.
If your marriage is affecting the way you raise your child and their emotional health, then maybe getting a divorce might be the right thing to do. Especially if you are in an abusive marriage, or if your children are being abused.
Studies have also shown though, that children always do better with both parents, even if the parents no longer love one another. If parents can work together to raise their children, and not fight in front of their kids, then children do, do better with both their mom and dad. In these cases, parents are then forced to put their happiness on the back seat. But this can be really difficult to do if you are completely unhappy. You would have to weigh up the pros and cons and make an informed decision that would benefit everyone.
Here are some things you can think about, that can help you decide what would be the best thing to do.
- Can your marriage work with help?
If you and your spouse still love one another, maybe all you need is some counseling from a professional. If you can repair your marriage and work on it, it is always best to do so. If there is any way that you can work through your issues, (and both partners need to work through things together) then perhaps you can save your marriage. A qualified marriage therapist can help you figure out what went wrong and how to work together to fix your relationship. Divorce is incredibly stressful, it would be wise to do everything possible to fix your marriage first. Don’t make an emotional decision when it comes to getting a divorce. Think things through logically and clearly.
- Is there any kind of abuse?
If you are in an abusive marriage, whether it is physical, emotional or sexual, then divorce would be the better option. Also if your spouse is a serial cheater, then divorce would be a good idea.
All experts agree, that if children are raised in abusive homes, this will be detrimental to their emotional and even physical health. If your partner is abusing your children in any way, get out! Protect your children and file for divorce. In rare cases, the abuser can seek help and change, but this is rare. If abuse is aimed at your children, and the abuser is not changing, after receiving help, you will need to protect your children and get away from the abuser.
- Can you live together, even unhappily for some time?
If you and your spouse can stick together for a while, for your kid’s sake, that could be a wise option. If you can do this amicably, raising your children together, even if it’s just until they are out of school. If you can co-parent positively and keep your differences at bay, for the sake of your children, they will benefit if both mom and dad live together. Who knows? Maybe during this time, you and your spouse can make amends and sort your marriage out.
- How would your children feel about the divorce?
Do your kids feel safe in your family? Or are they scared? Anxious even? Does your constant fighting make your children seem worse off? If this is the case, divorce might be a better option. Children need to feel safe and loved in their own homes. If they don’t feel this way, then this will impact their emotional health.
On a last thought
So it depends. Staying together for the kids depends on various factors. If your home is not a home, and full of hate, criticism, fights, abuse, and anger, this will be harmful to the children. In cases like this, divorce would be better. But if you and your spouse are still amicable and co-parenting your children with love and support, this will benefit your kids. Studies have shown that 80% of children who come from broken homes seem to be fine, in the same way that children who come from intact families are. So at the end of the day, the decision is really yours and you will know what the best thing for your family is.