There are certainly divorce cases where children take it very well. In fact, studies have found that divorce can be positive if the previous relationship was a high-conflict marriage. It’s not necessarily better to stay together for the children, but could be far worse for the child to live in that high-conflict household.
However, there are also many children who take their parents’ divorce fairly hard, and they may even blame themselves. Parents want to be careful to explain repeatedly to children that the divorce is not their fault.
At the same time, parents may find themselves a bit confused about why the child would even think this to begin with. They do not blame the child. Where did this idea come from? The answer could be something called magical thinking.
The belief that thoughts impact the world
Young children often believe that the things that they think have a much larger impact on the world around them than they actually do. In some cases, they believe that they can influence events and make them happen, intentionally, simply by their thoughts or wishes. This is called magical thinking by therapists, and it typically goes away as people get older.
For instance, say that a child had a fight with one of his or her parents. In anger, the child said something about wishing they would go away forever. The parents have probably forgotten about this outburst because they knew it wasn’t serious, but the child may distinctly remember that when they find out about the divorce.
As you go through your divorce and focus on putting your child first, be sure you know about all of your legal options.