As many Massachusetts residents know, divorce is an action that has a ripple effect of consequences. It often means one or both parties finding a new place to live, giving up some of their possessions or having to pay alimony. When there are very young children involved, the consequences of their parents' decision can have effects that continue to manifest throughout their young lives and into adulthood. They are the subjects of child custody and must go from seeing both of their parents regularly to possibly seeing one parent far more often than the other parent.
A recent study has shown that people with parents who divorced when the children were very young were apt to have less stable relationships with their parents. Because they saw at a young age that the idea of marriage was not a permanent one, they may find themselves unable to fully connect with their parents emotionally for fear that their relationship may not be permanent either. They often feel that their parents may not be psychologically available when the children need emotional support as they grow.
Child custody agreements seem to have an effect on how the relationships with parents progress as well. If a mother wins custody of children, then those children may have a more stable relationship with their mother than with their father who they see less often. The same correlation seems to apply when fathers gain custody. Understanding this information may help parents pay better attention to children's emotional needs as the parents go through divorce.
Child custody is often a tense point between parents as few wish to give up their children to the other parent. Knowing that the children could develop unstable relationships with a noncustodial parent could lead parents to having more discussion about how custody and visitation should be divided. By looking into Massachusetts child custody laws, parents may be able to better prepare themselves and have a higher chance of receiving the custody agreements they seek.
Source: Medical News Today, "Early Divorce Can Affect Parent-Child Relationships Later," Kelly Fitzgerald, July 1, 2013