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Recognizing Red Flag Behavior in Children During a Divorce

A divorce doesn’t have to be contentious to be extremely challenging for children to handle. Kids tend to thrive on structure and routine, and divorce often interrupts both. Plus, mommy and daddy aren’t going to live together anymore, and they may not be old enough to understand why.

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Add in their undeveloped emotional intelligence, and children might only be able to express their feelings by acting out. Even as parents work with family law attorneys in Hernando County Florida, they need to stay involved with their kids and watch for signs that they may not be dealing with it well.

1. Change in Eating Habits

Just as in adults, when kids experience emotional trauma, it can affect appetite. Children may begin eating less or refusing to eat certain foods. Some others might start overeating as a symptom of anxiety or depression. Proper nutrition is essential for growing kids; divorcing adults may greatly benefit their children by ensuring well-balanced meals in appropriate portions.

2. Nightmares and Sleeplessness

Children who don’t know how to process or express their feelings accurately often find that they manifest in nightmares. In addition to frequent waking during the night, this could lead to extreme reluctance to go to bed in the first place. New homes may also mean rapidly changing schedules, which can make it more difficult for children to get to sleep.

3. Problems With Social Interactions

Kids of divorcing parents generally experience some change in their social behavior. Depression can cause some to withdraw during class or playtime. Other children may become more aggressive and confrontational, transferring their anger at their parents onto their peers.

Children still need their parents to be an anchor to as positive an outlook as possible. No matter how difficult the divorce might be for the adults, they should also remember that their kids have acute feelings as well that are likely disrupting their normal behavior.