Building Bridges

Background (continued)

What problems do children experience during and after divorce?
In the first months and years, commonly reported problems include self-blame, guilt, anxiety, rage, withdrawal, depression, terror, loneliness, feelings of abandonment, aggressive behavior, decline in academic performance and scholastic motivation, and parent-child conflict (4-9). In adolescence, new problems often appear, such as delinquent behavior, use of alcohol and other drugs, and early sexual activity (10). In the adult years, researchers report finding cravings for intimacy, expectations of abandonment, pervasive feelings of vulnerability (11, 12) and, to a degree even greater than that seen among children who experienced early parental death, an increased prevalence of such psychiatric illness as major depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia (13).

2. Children in divorced families are at increased risk of which of the following?
a. feelings of guilt
b. decline in academic performance
c. aggressive behavior
d. all of the above


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