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Children Think Marriages Are Worth Saving

Every year, an additional million American children are involved in divorce. As parents create new lives in separate homes, children often find their voices going unheard, muffled by rigid courts and overburdened service agencies. A growing number of family and legal experts are calling for changes to help children. "Few adults anticipate accurately what lies ahead when they decide to divorce," wrote Judith Wallerstein and Sandra Blakeslee in their landmark book, Second Chances (1989).

"Life is almost always more arduous and more complicated than they expect. It is often more depleting and more lonely -for at- least one partner  in the-marriage, At the time of divorce, people are intent on getting rid of their unhappiness, and they find it difficult to conjure up understanding for something they have never experienced. It is hard for them to imagine the multiple changes that divorce will bring."

Research shows that except in extreme cases of abuse, children want their parents together. Children often have no say in the decision that profoundly affects them for the rest of their lives. When parents decide to end their marriage, it means the death of the child's family.

* One study found that eighteen months after a divorce, children have serious psychological problems comparable to "victims of natural disaster."

* Sixty-five percent of children could not concentrate in school, eat or sleep properly, make friends, and are depressed, withdrawn, or hostile.

* Even ten years after divorce, over 40% of these young people still had no set goals, a limited education, and a sense of hopelessness.

While the Bible does give authority for divorce in some cases (cf. Mt. 19:9), its admonition to, "Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others" (Phil. 2:4) surely needs considering.