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Custody disputes and a child’s emotional well-being

On Behalf of | Jun 4, 2024 | Child Custody |

Child custody disputes can have a profound emotional impact on all parties involved, especially the children caught in the middle. These disputes arise when parents are unable to reach an agreement regarding the custody and visitation rights of their children after a separation or divorce.

The emotional toll of such disputes can be overwhelming and long-lasting. This highlights the importance of focusing on your child’s best interests when dealing with custody matters.

Confusion and insecurity

One of the primary emotions experienced by children in the midst of a custody dispute is confusion. They may struggle to understand why their parents are fighting over them or feel torn between two people they love. This confusion can lead to anxiety as children worry about where they will live, who will take care of them and what their future will look like.

Children going through custody battles often experience fear and insecurity. They may be afraid of losing contact with one parent or worry about being abandoned. The uncertainty surrounding their living arrangements can create a sense of instability and insecurity that impacts their overall well-being.

Guilt and anger

Children may also internalize the conflict between their parents and feel guilty or responsible for the situation. They might believe that they are the cause of the dispute or that they need to choose sides to make things better. This burden of guilt can weigh heavily on children and affect their self-esteem. As custody disputes escalate, children may start to feel anger and resentment towards their parents for putting them in such a difficult position. They may struggle with feelings of betrayal or abandonment, leading to behavioral issues or emotional outbursts as they try to cope with these intense emotions.

Parents in this position should remember that they are not alone. According to the Census Bureau, roughly 21.9 million kids under 21 had a parent living outside of the home during 2018. It is very important for parents to prioritize their children’s well-being during a custody dispute and focus on minimizing the emotional toll of this situation.