Helping Divorced Families

Divorce can have both positive and negative effects on children. As they adjust to a new family dynamic, it may take some time to develop their individual relationships with each parent. When divorce occurs new behavior and communication patterns develop, which can sometimes lead to the child or teen feeling uncertain about how they should act, or who they should be in this new situation. 

How Divorce Affects Children

Transitioning between households can also create a new challenge. Some may become hyper-focused as they work to keep a sense of control in a situation that feels very out of their control. They may try to exert that control in their new parental dynamics through acting out, which could even present as oppositional or defiant behavior. On the other hand, there may be children who seek to find balance in their relationships. They feel that if they have one experience with mom, going to the park for example, they need to do the same thing with dad in order for the relationships to be balanced. 

Children working through the uncertainty of their changing family landscape may feel a range of emotions from anxiety to sadness to anger. There may be feelings of grief as they mourn the loss of the family as they knew it. They may also experience a decline in school performance or lack of interest in activities they previously enjoyed. If your daughter is experiencing a decline in overall functioning it may be time to enroll in a treatment facility such as Asheville Academy.

Working with Families with Divorced Parents

Asheville Academy’s primary focus is on relationships. The relationship between the parent and child, but also the parent-to-parent relationship as well. A therapeutic boarding school can help students practice skills and learn to set boundaries. Sometimes, when parents are divorced, there may be one parent that may compensate for the time they’re not spending with their child with presents or a lack of boundaries, where they let the student do whatever they want to do. That parent may worry that by holding a boundary, it will affect the quality of time that they have with the student. Setting, holding, and respecting boundaries between parent and child, and between parents as well is an important part of setting new family dynamics. 

Through working with a therapist, both the student and their family can learn to use and practice communication and boundary setting skills. This can help set them up for success when they return back home as consistency across both households is very important. When there is consistency, students know clearly what to expect and they have structure. Much of the work done toward the end of a student’s time at Asheville Academy is creating a home agreement with the understanding that the whole family is going to work together. 

Asheville Academy Can Help

At Asheville Academy, family involvement and a personalized therapeutic experience help strengthen family bonds. This is a large part of what makes Asheville Academy uniquely suited to help your child and family achieve long-term success. For more information please call (800) 264-8709.

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