Why Staying Unhappily Married May Be as Bad for Children as Divorce

 

Dr. Miriam Galindo pic

Dr. Miriam Galindo
Image: galindopsychology.com

Dr. Miriam Galindo, a diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Social Workers, offers counseling services from her practice in Irvine, California. In addition, Dr. Miriam Galindo provides child and family therapy to clients involved in high-conflict divorces.

Many adults believe divorce should be avoided at all costs, but staying in an unhappy marriage may be as damaging to children as a turbulent divorce. As children develop, they naturally internalize both of their parents. When their parents are constantly at odds, children internalize those conflicts.

Over time, children start believing they are responsible for their parents’ unhappiness. Researchers believe this occurs because children are egocentric and believe they are more powerful than they actually are. Combined with the other stressors of living with parents who do not get along, this problem may result in a child’s fear of intimacy, mood issues, self-esteem issues, or mental health concerns, such as depression.

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