How Growing Up for the Last 10 Years with Divorced Parents Has Affected/Impacted Me


Couples, I understand that it's easy to divorce when there are issues in the relationship. But please, if you have a child, consider doing your damn best to work it out, ok? Because the last 10 years of my life were pretty hard in some ways because my parents divorced when I was 6.

How growing up for the last 10 years with divorced parents has affected/impacted me

To start off, I was pretty upset but, since I was only 6, I didn't grasp just what the concept of divorce meant. My mom ended up with main custody of me, so my dad only got to see me on weekends. But my mom re-married and I actually knew the man she married, and he already had 2 daughters. My dad married maybe 2 years later and I had a new step-sister and brother.

Jump forward a few years later to when I was around 9 or 10. At that point, I had 1 full sister, 3 or 4 half-sisters (I can't remember exact birth-years at the moment), 3 step-sisters, and 1 step-brother. Then, my dad only got to see me during the weekend *every two weeks* and I ended up missing him when I was at my mom's house because I had 5-6 siblings at her house, with none of them being male, so things got hectic very often and I had nobody to hang out with me because my full sister stopped hanging out with me at that point (she is 3 years older than me). I was lonely and bored, and I didn't even have my actual father there to talk to.

Jump 4 years in the future from there. During that time period, I now had 1 full sister, 6 half-sisters, 3 step-sisters, and 1 step-brother. At that point I began to get slightly more social and mellowed-out, so at that point the custody (not choice/want) absence of my father in my main life stopped bothering me because at that point there was just nothing I could do to change it, so I just stopped caring. I still went to his house every 2 weeks for a few days, but I stopped caring that it was so little.

Finally, jump to 2 more years in the future, to the present. I should say that I am thankful for my step-father because he is very much a father-figure in my life, he always was, but it wasn't and still isn't quite the same. I came to terms with the divorce of my parents, realizing I wouldn't have so many siblings/sisters if it hadn't happened. I hang out with my dad whenever I can (I don't/can't drive, though). I also came to accept that my mother, despite always loving her and never telling her I was bitter about it, was the reason for the divorce and forgave her in my heart. But, no matter how much I've gotten over my parents' divorce, I will never be 100% over it because of the lack of my dad in my life. I just missed so much time with him over the years that I'm just deeply saddened over it. It bothers me so much that I have made it one of my ultimate goals as a parent to never force my kid(s) to go through the horrible experience that is life with one parent. I just don't have it in my heart to put my future kids what I had to endure for 10 years.

How Growing Up for the Last 10 Years with Divorced Parents Has Affected/Impacted Me
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Most Helpful Girl

  • RedMatch
    I get what you mean, though i disagree that the parents should stay together if its not working out, they have their lives as well, but it seems that they should have organised who you saw better and let you be with who you wanted.

    My parents divorced when I was 6 as well, but it hasn't bothered me even as a kid, I just didn't care though that may be because i had little connection to him. I had no siblings and no friends as i was on a 600 acer farm doing home schooling and closest neighbours had no kids my age. The only people I had were my grandparents and my mother, and the only times i saw my father where in the school holidays as he lived a distance away, every holiday was more like a dooms day for me as a kid, often i didn't want to go, with him i'd cry and be usually unhappy not because he was bad to me but because he would get frustrated and angry with me simply due to not knowing me well enough and frustrations with himself. My mother always offered me if i wanted to stay with him but i never wanted to. Now as a teenager he and I get better on with each other as he has changed over the past year in personality, now we are able to do more things together with common interests and he has come to realise that i am my own person rather then trying to control me instead of working with me. We now are talking about seeing each other weekly as i am beginning to not mind being with him since we have common interests and he has changed how he did things. So i guess divorce families affects people in different ways.
    Is this still revelant?
    • Gavyn

      Yeah. It's just a thing that's bothered me. But anyway, I never said that they must work the issues out, I just asked that they consider it. If it isn't possible, then I respect that just as much.

Most Helpful Guy

  • jp612612
    You know, I'm a recently divorced guy with two kids and I really appreciate your post here, but I can't help but feel that the problem here isn't so much the divorce but that well... your dad didn't put forth enough effort. I mean, your parents divorced during a different time but I'll be honest here -- I don't understand why they seemed to be in such a hurry to re-marry.

    I forget what the subject was, but a few days ago there was a guy who wrote an answer and mentioned that he was basically no longer sexually active. People asked him why and he said it's because he's a single dad now with two kids and people seemed to be all "What?" But you know... I felt I understood him perfectly! The divorce for me signaled a rearrangement of my priorities and near the bottom of that list is my romantic relationships with women. It's not that I still don't go out with women, but I'll tell you right now that most of them don't seem to be too cool with "I told you not to call/text me on the days I have my daughters". But whatever. That's now my life and it's by choice. Your dad made a different choice and I know you love him, but I'll be honest with you -- I wouldn't make the same choice he did. Seeing a child every other weekend isn't nearly enough and I would have been fighting for a lot more. Maybe he could never get more than that and I understand what women's court... err... family court can be like, but this is on him.
    Is this still revelant?
    • Gavyn

      No it's that they came to a compromise on custody. My dad worked, my mom didn't. Simple as that.

    • jp612612

      Right, but I work too. In fact, I work a lot of hours -- it actually came up as part of the argument as to why I shouldn't get more custody. The judge asked me if it was true that there are some nights where I would work from midnight to 7am working with our European partners only to work day hours from 8am to 4pm. I had to admit it was true and she said that she didn't see where I had time to have the kids more. I told her that in spite of this, I did all of the cooking, cleaning, and grocery shopping during the marriage and that I was simply better at managing my time than my ex-wife. I told her that in spite of having them way less time, I still cook more meals for the girls because my ex-wife doesn't cook.

      The thing is Gavyn, if you want something, you fight for it and I don't want to give your dad too hard of a time here, but I get so irked when I read guys on here who roll over and say "Welp! Women are just better parents!" because those guys screw over the rest of us.

    • Gavyn

      Yeah I know. All I meant was that the fact that he works means he can't take care of me 24/7 as a single parent because all of his relatives, every single one of them, lives hundreds of miles away in other states. Whereas my mom didn't work, had relatives in the same house who could take take care of me and my sister if need be, and food stamps. Just food stamps. So yeah, that's why they decided on my mom having main custody instead of my dad. Because it was just what was better for the both of us.

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What Girls & Guys Said

  • IsenhowerJ
    I get what your saying bro. Divorce is a bitch, but it happens. It is tough on everyone, not just the kids. The mom and dad have to re-adjust their lives to being single and then court dates and such to determine who gets the kids and who pays child-support. Its never easy.
    • Gavyn

      Yeah, I watched it happen. It's just always stricken me as a little selfish when someone files for divorce when the issues can be worked out. But you know, that's life, isn't it? lol

  • midnightmoon05
    I totally get what you are saying. Gosh... the mess and confusion.. so many kids and so little attention/love. People and court nowdays dont value mariages anymore resulting in more divorces... and easy to leave becasue I am not happy rather than love ea. other and work things out not becsue stay for the kids. When two peole learn to love and work things out. The kids benefits as well as the marriage.

    The disadvantage in divorces are the children. Like my two. As much as myself and ex. try. and as happy as they are and privilage as they are, I do see the hurt it is causing them or may still affect them. now at age 10 and 8
    I fought to keep the family together, but he wanted to leave. I was in so much agony that I wanted to leave the kids to him so that the children can have one home rather than no home to call of their own. And worse, he wouldn't let me take on my offer that he can do what he wishes and come see kids anytime he wishes.
    He and his mother manipulated the system and wanted phyical custody so he doesn't have to pay for child support. They fought the extra one day a yr. to avoid paying.
    Granted he made double as much as me and refused to pay a dime. At this point, based on shared since the court will not allow him to be the primary custoian (makes most of decisions and have all tax write offs). We now share and he pays nothing and his mom is taking care of the kids and she complains how tire she is on a regulare basies and kids hate going to her place. She said she didn't want us to divorce now, but back then, she told him to take kids away from me and now she pays everyting, clothes, camp... so him making the big bucks is not spend on the kids.
    Where is he? lol busy pleasing his new woman and wanting me to raise kids with his mom. So I am resentful that kids have 3 homes instead of one. Kids have to be at his moms instead when they can be with me, a teacher with time and knowledge on how to raise kids and not ask for child support.
    I dont care about child support when I can support the kids. since we did well in investments. But to be fair, combined income should be share equally in a share divorce matter.
    • I do not wish my children to not have father time or mommy time. I wish he would spend the time he fought, yet he is gone most of the time "working late" and kids sleep over at grandmas becasue they want to when they told me they dont like being there. Not being involve, he doesn't know whats going on with kids school work. while i am a teacher who can and should be working/teaching kids daily instead of his mom. and the benefit is he can see/want kids anytime he is free and not have to pay.
      So far, I dont know if he will remarry or any woman he is dating have kids or if he will have more kids (i doubt it, but one can never know the future).

      You look ahead and do whats best for yourself and create a fmaily that you will value the traditional family structure with love and care for your children. Thats the best you can do.

  • Barrabus_the_Free
    My parents divorced when I was in about 5th grade. Not long before that, I found out that the only sibling I had at the time was not my dad's daughter, even though he'd been raising her for almost a decade. Anyway, parents split, and as is typical, my mom gets everything. My dad is living in his truck (he was a truck driver, luckily). She manages to turn the kids against him. He moves back to the state I was born in. He tries to stay in touch and whatnot, I was young and fucking stupid and I wasn't having any of it.

    I missed out on years with my dad, much the same as you, because my mom decided to be a typical lying, manipulative woman.

    Toward the end of high school, I patched things up with my dad. When I was in. mil, his place is usually where I went when I was on leave or if I had a long weekend and wanted to get out of CA.

    A few months before my enlistment ended, while I was in either the Coral or Solomon Sea (I'm not sure which, it's not like I had grid coordinates of where we were) I got a message from the Red Cross that he'd died.

    I'm glad that I got to have a relationship with him again, and I'm lucky that it was as good as it was. Those years we lost though... and all because my mom decided to be a typical woman.

    If you can, work on your relationship with your dad. Spend as much time together as you can. You never know, you might end up only getting a few more years, and spend the rest of your life wishing for just one more day.
  • April10
    I can't even imagine how tough that might be. I'm lucky my parents are so supportive and together after 30+ years
    • Gavyn

      Yeah. Be thankful! :D

  • BaileyisDarcy
    Is it better for kids to expereince an unhealthy relationship between their parents and think its normal? To then get into just as unhealthy a relationship because thats all theyve ever known?

    Yeah it fucking sucks having split parents but its better than the alternative.
    • Inuyasha86

      In that case, you shouldn't be having children with that person at all. What the hell is wrong with these people?

    • @Inuyasha86
      Most people shouldn't be having children yet they do. My mother should never have gotten knocked up and my dad has 3 women to his 5 children. He needs to learn to keep his dick to himself.

      People are gonna have kids whether they should or should not. doesn't change the fact that the kid is better off with those parents split up and trying to be civil, than together and forgetting what civility even is.

  • lia_98
    i really feel that this depends on different situations, my parents got officially divorced when i was 15 but they were separated since i was 6, the "tried their best" to stay together, even though they didn't love or support each other, they slept in separate rooms and they would always have fights about the stupidest things like one fight i remember in particular had to do with my uniform i was in grade 3 and my dad just started yelling at my mom cause my white school socks weren't white enough...

    my sister and i were always cautious around my parents cause we didn't know when they would explode again... and that made our childhoods miserable.. they would even start sabotaging each other.. so the day my dad moved out is considered one of the best days of our lives between my sister and i..

    i reaaaaallllyyyyy believe it depends on the situation, sometimes staying together hurts the kids more than being separated..

    • lia_98

      and just an add on, this might sound completely redundant or might make you a little upset but if your dad truly did have the desire to be around you more he would have made a plan, and you can't blame your mother for the divorce you werent placed in her position and you dont know the entire story of what happened so seriously dont come around with you " i forgave her in my heart." what is there to forgive? are you forgiving her for preventing herself from getting hurt anymore and separating with your dad? or are you forgiving her for letting your dad go? @Gavyn

    • Gavyn

      She cheated on my dad, and when my dad was willing to repair the relationship and look past it, she was unwilling and instead chose to divorce him. You're right, I don't know the whole story, but if you're the only one unwilling to repair the relationship, doesn't that mean that you're the overall cause of the divorce?

    • @ lia_98 "He would have made a plan," are you kidding me? Based on the facts, it sounds like his mother got a very generous visitation plan to her benefit (including support, I'm sure.) The fact that it was basically every other weekend tells me that the mother wasn't willing to give up any of "her time," so the boy could learn how to be a man from his father. So, genius, explain how his Father could have "made a plan," when the courts and the custodial parent are aligned against him?

      Adding to the fact the mom cheated and it's yet another situation where men get raked over the coals when it comes to divorce.

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  • nikasunike
    I'm actually glad my parents did, because it was a nightmare when they're together. I learned a lot about relationships though from it. And it also happened when I was pretty young, so I'm used to it by now
  • goddess87
    I always fantasized about my parents getting a divorce. It's much worse for a child to have to suffer being around parents who clearly don't want to be with each other
  • Warmapplecrumble
    I've been through similar things.

    I completely agree.

    I have decided if I ever have children I am going to try my damn hardest to make it work.
  • scooogy
    I got to know quite some girls with divorced parents, and some mothers didn't even marry again. Yet the girls seemed happy without their fathers, even called them names. Kind of shows which relationships last longer in a family.
  • nice take sorry for ya. my parents divorced when i was 7 didn't really affect me much nore did i really care they did.
  • Euph0ria
    I can relate to this, being a father who only has visitation once every two weeks as well. It's SO hard on me not being able to see my kids on a regular basis, and watching them grow, being there for them and being able to take care of them, and all the time that is lost. It has *never* gotten better or easier. I watch my kids grow up so much even in just the two weeks between visits and it breaks my heart. I think about them every day. Men really get a raw deal when it comes to kids, and the court system is really messed up and biased against men. They never get custody unless the mother has been proven to be incompetent (like a drug addict, abuse, or severe neglect), and even then the courts are still biased. It breaks my heart to hear about your experience, because it's so hard knowing that my kids feel similarly.
  • Apope16
    Thank you so much for this eye opening experience. I've always wonder how it impacts dating life.
  • Harry_Richard
    Very similar upbringing, only difference is I didn't have step-siblings from stepdads side. Brother was born later but he's still 50% blood.
    • Gavyn

      Ah, haha. I feel kind of happy that someone truly understands what I'm talking about, even if only a little bit.

  • Rayofmoonshine
    It made me more cautious about getting into relationships...
  • blackpantherbig
    sorry to hear that. at least you took positive out of it
    • Gavyn

      Yeah, it's not like I had much other choice. It was either let it bum me down and rule my life or look at the positives and do my best to get over it.

  • Thank you
  • CT_CD
    Interesting take
  • John_Doesnt
    It didn't affect me at all and I'm drunk.
  • Alyssa91
    I understand you
  • Tohru
  • grisolucan1
  • Anonymous
    Sorry to hear that
  • Anonymous
    Nice take.
  • Anonymous
    I think it must be traumatic to see a failing relationship and not be able to control it
  • Anonymous
    I can understand that..
  • Anonymous
    that was very emotional, I"m sorry you had to go through that.
    I have an aunt who divorced her husband after having 5 kids, and then remarried. All of her sons become very mentally lost, and just turned to drugs and dropped out of school (all three of them). I feel really sad for them, only one daughter, the oldest, was able to get a nursing degree and get married. My parents were able to work out their issues and be married close to 40 years now. I think I look at that and think that it is best for a husband and wife to stay together, especially considering having kids. We have two now, and we don't plan on separating
  • Anonymous
    My parents broke up when I was thirteen. Two year later my mom moved us in with my stepfather who had a younger son and daughter a year younger than me. I ended up having a sexual relationship with my step sister when my step dad found out he kicked the crap out of me and I was sent to live with my Dad. My mom stayed and did nothing. I continued to see my step sister secretly and we live together as a proper couple.
  • Anonymous
    If it was me, i would just run away from home.
    • Gavyn

      That happened to us with one of my step-sisters and let me tell other people reading this, don't EVER. FUCKING. CONSIDER THAT. It worried us to hell!!!

    • Anonymous

      If two people were selfish enough to divorce, then I have the right to run away from home because all of the attention will be given to the step-siblings and both of your biological parents would end up resenting you for existing and being a by-product of a failed marriage.

      At least when you run away, you learn how to be independent.

    • Gavyn

      That's not true. I am very loved by both my parents! Thanks for suggesting my parents don't love me. And by running away, you don't learn to be independent. You learn to be selfish and self-absorbed and only pay attention to what you need. Besides, a 10-14 y/o can't work a job, they can't apply for a loan, they can't drive, they can't cook, they can't even build a make-shift shelter. How is that "independent"? That's just running out into woods to basically die unless you go back.

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  • Anonymous
    I'm from divorced parents and am divorced also, my parents divorced when I was 13 , brother was 9 and sister 5 , my mother never remarried till I was 23 . We lived pretty poorly that whole time. Now I'm recently divorced but stayed till they were 17 so even though I probably should have left sooner I try to work things out but it was hopeless but seems my daughters are ok at this point since I tried
    • Gavyn

      As someone who had a father who never could be there (he worked for a family of his own, he worked to support himself as well, whereas my mom didn't which is probably why they decided on the custody they did), I appreciate that you tried in their place, haha.

    • Anonymous

      Yeah child support is still going on so I'm not doing to well myself but she wanted the divorce so not much I could do

  • Anonymous
    thank you for sharing
    • Gavyn

      No prob. It's a part of my life I don't vocally share, and all of a sudden I felt a need to let people know that if the issue can be worked out, to try to work it out for the better of their kid (s).

  • Anonymous
    I don't agree that parents have to stay together. However, they should not use their kids as weapons (which happened to me). They also need to understand that their kids may want to "divorce" them as well. Their feelings must be respected as well.
    • Gavyn

      I didn't say they had to, I said try to work out the issues you have instead of just divorcing. At least attempt. If it doesn't work out, then you have no other choice I guess.

    • Anonymous

      I understand. The hard reality is that many people had no business marrying and/or having kids to begin with. The decision has far reaching effects that can go on promoting generations of dysfunction.

    • Gavyn

      Yeah. :'(

  • Anonymous
    that sucks though i guess it would have been worse if they where together and always fighting
    • Gavyn

      Probably, but honestly, occasionally my mind wanders back to my parents and I just end up wondering, "What could have been?".

  • Anonymous
    nice one