Adolescents’ reaction to the news of divorce could be anywhere within the spectrum of intense anger, sadness, and depression to no reaction at all. Adolescents who express their feelings accuse their parents of “ruining their life”, “ being selfish” and “ inconsiderate”. They may also act up as being the “victims of their parents’ decision”. As a result, their grades at school may drop, they may start missing classes, refuse to go to school, and hang out with the troublesome kids at school and justify their behaviour as the consequence of the parents’ separation.
On the other end, adolescents who do not show any feelings may seem to be taking the news of the divorce very well; nothing changes in their behaviour or school grades and they continue to be the same. However, every teen will react to the separation in some explicit way; although it may take them days or even months. Parents need to be prepared for a backlash and be present when their adolescent needs to express feelings.
Art Therapy is an excellent approach to help adolescents reach out to their inner world and implicit emotions. Role-play, mask-making, and story-making are among the art therapy activities that will help the kids identify difficult feelings and learn new skills to manage and regulate their emotions.
Keep in mind that using the help of a child therapist does NOT imply bad parenting and at the same time, it does not make everything right in the adolescent’s life. But it will provide an extra support, which will prepare him/her to deal with the new life after the divorce.
Everyone deserves to live a happy life!
Call us now for an appointment for your kid!
By: Reyhane Namdari