How Are Your Children Handling The Divorce?

The following are the stories of four children from three separate marriages which ended in divorce when the children were in their mid to late teens.


Carol has bittersweet memories of her childhood. Her parents fought a great deal and she found herself pulled into the middle of many of the fights. Each parent wanted her to see how “bad” the other parent was. Each parent wanted her on their side.

When she attempted to remain neutral, trying to explain to each parent that she loved them equally, she was told “If it wasn’t for you, I’d have left your mother (or father) long ago!” It took years of expensive therapy for Carol to realize that her parents’ unhappiness was not her fault.


Jeff was the quiet type, and his mother’s favorite child. Some days, though, his mother complained to him about his father, trying to get him to understand the pain she was suffering by being married to such a terrible man. What Jeff saw was a hardworking man doing the best he could to provide for his family.

Jeff didn’t know what to do. If he took his mother’s side, he would hurt his father. If he didn’t take her side, he’d hurt his mother. Rather than choose, he ran away from home. “Now see what you made your son do!” is what his mother told his father.

Jani and Judi

Jani and Judi were born two years apart. It was just enough of an age difference to keep them at odds during their teen years. As they struggled to get through those difficult years, their parents were encountering difficulties of their own.

Ray and Carol married just out of high school and Jani was born six months later. They both worked long hours at blue collar jobs but there never seemed to be enough money. The birth of Judi put them even farther behind.

The strain of responsibility hit Ray when he turned thirty-five. He began going out with the guys for beers after work and on the weekends. Carol reacted by going out with her girlfriends. It wasn’t long before Carol met a man who made her feel special and it wasn’t much longer before Ray met a friendly brunette. As their home disintegrated, and their parents went their separate ways, Jani and Judi quit high school to get married.