Divorced parents simply have no appreciation of the trauma they cause their children, most of which is totally preventable. Yes, divorce is difficult for kids, but they can successfully deal with it if they have parents who love them more than they dislike their ex-spouse.
Parents underestimate what their children feel, think and experience about the divorce process. Kids really do pick up on your subtle sarcasm, rolling of the eyes, abrupt style and frequent put downs of your ex-spouse. Why do divorced parents behave in such a terrible manner? I’ve asked that question many times to parents in my office, and I typically get a litany of the many real and perceived hurts inflicted by the ex-spouse. Bad behavior by one parent doesn’t justify retribution by the other.
Here’s what a 10-year told me recently. “They think I don’t know stuff they say about each other but I do. It hurts. It hurts a lot!”
[Reprinted by permission from the Dec. 30 edition of the Dayton Daily News, “Thoughts on children drawn from past year”, Family Wise, Gregory Ramey, PH.D.]
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Guest Contributor Gregory Ramey, PhD, Child Psychologist and Dayton Daily News Columnist
Gregory Ramey, PhD, is a nationally recognized child psychologist and columnist who has worked at Dayton Children’s Hospital since 1979. In addition to his weekly column in the Dayton Daily News about effective parenting, Ramey has conducted more than 200 workshops and has recently been quoted in articles in Redbook, Parenting, Ladies Home Journal as well as columns distributed by the New York Times Wire Service.