Ask the therapist: Does a couple's separation affect a child adversely?

Dr Annette Schonder
Filed on February 3, 2021

My parents are in the process of getting separated. While they seem happy about it, I can’t imagine that I’m not going to see them together as I once did. I don’t know how to carry on. I’m in eighth grade and almost everyone in class has family to go back to. — Name Withheld

Dear Writer, I can only imagine how difficult it must be for you see you parents separating and worrying about not seeing them together as you once did.

The first thing that I want to reassure you of is that you and your parents are still a family. You might not live under the same roof as before, but be assured both of your parents will continue to love you and take care of you. Your family will still be a family, just in a different way.

It is very important that you tell your parents how you feel and what you are worried about. Together you will work out a system where you will be well taken care of and be able to be with each parent separately and at times together. This is known as co-parenting — when separated or divorced parents work together to give their children what they need. Many co-parents will also find a way to be together on special days, family gatherings, or even holidays.

You will have to put trust in your parents that they will be cordial with each other and always find a way to put your needs ahead of their differences. If they have difficulties working things out in a positive way, I suggest they see a relationship counsellor for direction and advice.

Dr Schonder is an integrated therapist at https://chmc-dubai.com/





 
 
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