’s Effects On Children Essay, Research Paper
“Divorce and its effects on Children”Marriage is inversely defined as a pure understanding and love for one another. Marriage is indeed a very joyful event; full of learning and sharing. However, just as many forget the true meaning of Christmas; as is the means of marriage. To develop a healthy and spiritual marriage, both parties should come together in a combining effort to strengthen their relationship. Nevertheless, much is to be done to redefine the status of what marriage is all about, or face the consequences of divorce. Divorce is a tumultuous event in a married couple’s life. The issue of divorce is not only the main problem in the society of today. For the past decade, divorce and the custody battle have rapidly become a significant life event for perhaps millions of Americans each year. “There were more than two million divorces each year, affecting 3 million adults and more than two million children (Thompson, Parting 18).” Thus we can prognosticate that the American family of today is definitely ill and is in great need of a revival. The role of divorce has been frequently overlooked because its destructive effects have been subtle, yet insidious. Recently the hottest headline on “Entertainment Weekly” was”Who Wants To Marry A Multi-Millionaire.” Here it took Darva Conger just 48 hours to realize that she yearned for good family values and declared she made a huge mistake. Seemingly seconds later, the newlyweds are divorced. Not a big deal, right? I mean, we’ve heard more interesting where the intoxicated Dennis Rodman and Carmen Electra on one Saturday eve in Las Vegas and decided to have a quick wedding, but then sobered up and got a divorce.In order to be divorced in my parent’s era of the fifties, one mate had to be proven adulterous. Legally, one party was deemed guilty and one was innocent. In the late sixties, the “sexual revolution” began and couples rebelled against the constraints of marriage. Moviemakers and journalists became rich extolling the virtues of free love and liberation. History sure can repeat itself in ironic ways.Divorce has changed both the structure and the impact of the “family.” Divorce is a procrastinating alternative to an ongoing problem. The law and church indeed have every good intention on regulating marriage. The state should require more grounds for divorce. The elimination of the need to appear in court made it easier for couples to split. The divorce picture is not all rosy. According to Lenore Weitzman, divorced women get by on about 64% of the income they had during marriage. For children, this translates into less money for school, clothes, opportunities for traveling and learning, day care and sometimes food. Children can be called on to do adult tasks before they are ready, like caring for younger siblings. Indeed the presence of both loving parents embodying a child in an affection filled environment is paramount. An U.S. National Longitudinal Survey of Youth reveals that 27% of girls from divorced families become mothers versus 11% of girls from traditional families. Increased youth crime rate is caused largely by absent fathers as a result of divorce made too easy. In this new millenium, we will see two groups of working age adults emerging. One group will have received psychological, social, economic, educational and moral benefits and the other group will have been denied them all. The first group will have grown up with a father present in the house and the second group will have not had a father present. The groups will be roughly equal in size.Certainly our “fatherless society” cannot be blamed for all juvenile delinquency but it is a major contributor. Morals are taught best within the confines of a stable home with both parents’ present notes. In the past thirty year period, violent youth crime rose by 300% in the U.S., the number of single parent families rose by 300% and the divorce rate doubled, the same as it did in Canada. Seventy percent of juvenile offenders in U.S. jails grew up without a father.
There is a saying that “it takes a whole community to raise a child.” Mothers set the standards for the community and fathers enforce them. There is a drastic shortage of positive male role models. There is no doubt about it; single mothers have and can continue to raise good and responsible children. It takes the physical and emotional strength. My own mother did it. But the numbers show that lack of fathers contribute greatly to juvenile crime.Also, younger people in the U.S. who are marrying for the first time face roughly a 40-50% chance of divorcing in their lifetime (U.S. Bureau of the Census, 1992, P.5). Of those marriages that end in divorce, many will end in the first 3 to 5 years (U.S. Bureau of the Census, 1992, P.4). Economic opportunities also seem to be a significant factor in divorce. Another issue is the high numbers of extra marital affairs and infidelity cases. With sexual infidelity comes as a lack of respect for the other partner and blatant disloyalty in the marriage. This may not sustain the assumption that sexual fidelity is synonymous with loyalty, but it does allude to the idea that the concepts are interlocked. “To most couples, love, sex, and jealousy will seem a perfectly natural, even inevitable threesome, intimately associated with contemporary marriage. To get back on the course of a family oriented instead of a divorce oriented society; I feel we should start with acknowledgment of the sad state of affairs our families are in. We should recognize the link divorce has to youth crime. We should pay close attention to what makes successful families and model ours after theirs. We need to recognize that marriage and parenting is a difficult job but can be oh-so-rewarding. We must include a spirit and a higher being to guide us. We must instill belief, in something other than one self. When society takes advantage of alternatives reserved for the extraordinary, abuse comes into play. Marriage laws should be at the Federal level instead of the state level. If it is harder get a divorce; marriage will be a real commitment. This should cause many to make a clear conscious (not “spur of the moment”) design. Although it may cause less people to get married, the one’s that do will stay married longer. Probably the most important step in order for couples to have a solid relationship is education. Education is also a key to lowering divorce rate. Divorce is one of those issues where private and personal behavior exacts a huge public cost, “but because divorce and marriage are such intensely personal issues, most citizens are loath to support Any program that injects government into the process (Uncoupling 223).” We share the view that new laws or public programs cannot solve this crisis. However, it seems equally clear we cannot sit idle as divorce ravages families and society. Couples who are planning to get married should somehow take a step in advance to learn about the process of marriage and the circumstances that surround it. These can help couples better understand what marriage is all about and expectations their future. Counseling is also an alternative. Marriage counselors can be a great help for couples who are contemplating a marriage. Divorce isn’t a problem, until it’s taken for granted! Children will continue to suffer significant losses in their lives and unless the situation can be handled in a civil manner. The psychological torment will be customary and affect them for the rest of their lives. It is also believed that the divorce rate in the United States is the highest in the world and the reason for this are primarily the ever-changing role of the husbands and wives in their household, early marriage, infidelity, extra marital affairs, domestic violence, financial instability and psychological incapacity. Intimacy, time, effort trust and love are the key to have a peaceful and healthy relationship. Marriage for life is God’s ideal, but divorce is a reality in our society.