Scientists have long believed that children of divorced parents were more stressed when living in both parents’ homes. A new study shows that living with both parents after a divorce actually leads to less stress. Children in the study exhibited less signs of stress when they rotated their living situations.
The study was conducted by the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health in Sweden. Surveying 150,000 children between the ages of 12 and 15, the conclusion was that children that lived at one parents’ home permanently were more stressed than those living with both parents at different times of the week, month or year.
Stress signs that were considered included: sleeping problems, sadness and loss of appetite.
Dr. Alan Owens, owner of a counseling and therapy center, believes that the reason for less stress among the group was emotional support. Nurturing and emotional support from both parents alleviates stress and dependency on just one person. A child’s social group, in this case the parents, plays a vital role in the amount of stress a child will have.
The study also led to the conclusion that children that are able to spend time with each parent on a daily basis were less stressed. This leads to the conclusion that separated parents that live closer to each other may be beneficial for children.
Females demonstrated higher levels of sadness than their male counterparts, while both genders exhibited problems sleeping after a divorce.
Children that are allowed visitation with both parents on a weekly basis were less stressed overall. Solid, consistent visitation was the least stressful and did not cause undue stress as many parents believe when a divorce occurs.
It is vital that a visitation agreement be made during the divorce proceedings to ensure children have the emotional support they need from both parents.
The Micklin Law Group, LLC is a New Jersey law firm specializing in family law and estates. Attorney Brad Micklin was recently named to The National Advocates list of Top 100 attorneys from each state. To set up a consultation, call 973-562-0100.