The Not So Secret Life of Children with Divorced Parents

Flashback to 8 years ago. Life is extravagant. Both parents right by her side with smiles on their face, life seemed to be smooth and with no bumps ahead, living her childhood to the fullest as children should. She couldn’t imagine that all events could switch so drastically.

Now, to a life where both houses have two completely different simple-minded rules to keep in mind, and seeing both families arguing monthly. Imagine being distanced from your father or mother for a week or more because it is the other parent’s turn to have their short quality time with their child. Missing an extremely important individual in your youth years can be stressful and even depressing. Be grateful if you have both of your parents at your side because not that many do.

Meet freshman Alana Poole, one of the many children dealing with parental divorce.

“It’s so weird how circumstances can change so quickly in life. Like, one day my mother and father were living together and the other day it [was] just one of them,” Poole said.

The first time hearing those horrifying words that their parents are going to divorce is the most confusing words a child can hear.

“Not gonna lie, it was kinda confusing at first because I was young so I didn’t have a clue on what was going on,” Poole said.

“Alana was young when her father and I divorced. I’m not really sure she understood what was completely going on. She seemed like she was okay with everything [and] didn’t really show any emotion towards it,” Cathy Lynn Strong, Poole’s mother, said.

In teenage years, children need their parents for all the obstacles that their life throws at them. Whether it’s just a simple homework problem or with questions that hover around in their minds.

“When [I] have a question about something personal, but I can’t ask it because I am at my father’s house sucks. Like, I can’t ask my father or my stepmom about it because it would be awkward and uncomfortable to ask,” Poole said.

For a student in a situation with divorced parents, the separation can impact their amount of social events they can attend greatly than having both parents. With both parents, they decide on the answer together, but for students with divorced parents, there are more difficult additional steps that they take between each other.

“It is really hard to make plans with friends because we have church on Sunday and Tuesday. When the school year starts, it’s hard to have weekend sleepovers or hang out because my family strictly wants me to go to church on Sundays. It’s either that or picking up or dropping off situations,” Poole said.  

These situations can also affect the individual’s friends.

“It sucks that whenever we try to make plans, it ends up canceled because of certain problems, or that certain day she’s busy. However, I am glad that we go to the same school because we can talk during lunches or whenever she can stay after school for clubs,” Samantha Maier said.

Many may think that divorce doesn’t impact parents to the slightest, but divorce can be a tough time for both of the parents as well.  

“Honestly, I’d say the entire thing was the hardest part. Everyone’s lives were going to be different. For 7 years, 10 if you include when we were dating, I’d get up, go to work, and come home to see my wife and kids. Now at worse, I come home to an empty house,” Ronald Lester Poole Jr, Poole’s father, said.

Many individuals take in divorce in numerous amounts of ways, but a parent’s first priority is their children.

“One thing I was concerned about [was] how the kids were going to take it. My parents got divorced, however it wasn’t until I was 18, but I knew it wasn’t going to be easy on them,” Poole Jr said.

“I would say the hardest part is not being able to see both girls every day. I went from raising the girls 24/7 to only being able to see them two weeks out of the month,” Strong said.

Many students with both parents don’t realize what great advantage they have until a turn of events happens.

“One thing that I want kids with both parents to realize is that they should be grateful to have both of them by their side. I can be tough at times to not have both of them with me, but on the flip side I get to still see them on the weeks I do,” Poole said.

In teenage years, kids tend to distance themselves from their families and usually take them for granted. It’s usual for a teen to do that; it’s all the teen moods that everyone goes through, but they realize what they took for granted at such a late time. Those “for granted” aspects are usually found in teens that have both of their parents at their side.

Imagine not having a father or mother with you every single day cheering you on throughout all your life choices and obstacles. The people that are always there for you whenever you need help with a life problem or give you advice to not do the same mistake twice. The ones that you can trust and the ones that you can love. Not one individual can teach you everything. The carefree times can change into a more stressful environment in seconds.