As with any tough times in life, it is usually beneficial to talk with close friends or family who may have been through a similar experience. While there may be older family members to discuss marital problems or divorce with, many younger people don’t have friends going through divorce at a young age that they can relate with. While there are fewer “young divorces” due to people waiting longer to get married, it is more difficult for those who are getting divorced young to have a support group of friends who truly understand what they are going through.
“According to Pew Research Center, the divorce rate for adults ages 25 to 39 fell from 1990 to 2015. The median age at first marriage in 2016 was 29.5 for men and 27.4 for women.” (Chicago Tribune) Divorce affects many aspects of ones life including bio-socially, cognitively and psychosocially.
Biosocial: “anything which relates to the interaction between biological and social factors.” (Psychology Dictionary) While marriage “appears to reduce men’s testosterone levels” (Chicago Tribune) cohabitation and divorce would seem to have the opposite effect on men.
Sexual development benefits females on marriage and divorce may change that as well. Many times after a divorce people feel inadequate, they don’t socialize like they did prior to marriage and sometimes effects other relationships and their own health. They may lose their appetite or become more apt to drink or have substance abuse.
Cognitive effects of divorce are similar to cognitive effects of any other major life changing event. These cognitive effects include anxiety, depression, emotional pain and suffering, feeling insecure/ having low self esteem, anger and aggression.
Divorce is a lot like grieving a death. “As well as grieving the loss of your relationship, you may feel confused, isolated, and fearful about the future.” “But there are plenty of things you can do to cope with the pain, get through this difficult time, and even move on with a renewed sense of hope and optimism.” (Dealing with a Breakup or Divorce)
Psychosocial: “psychological and social factors that influence mental health.” and “Social influences such as peer pressure, parental support, cultural and religious background, socioeconomic status, and interpersonal relationships all help to shape personality and influence psychological makeup.” (Psychology Dictionary) Many times people fear not having the support of their family or friends during such a difficult time. Sometimes divorce goes against their religious beliefs and they could possibly be shunned from their family. Divorce psychosocial effects can also include the fear of not doing the right thing, having the fear of being alone forever and the fear of never finding true happiness. Psychosocial issues can keep people isolated. Many times people fear the social aspect after a divorce because they fear all the questions from others, they may not have all the answers. As a young newly divorced person, they’ve hardly had the life experiences to deal with all these aspects.
In conclusion, divorce is hard at any stage of life but extremely hard at such a young age with very little life experience. The one positive aspect of young divorces is that there usually is not children involved and many times there is not as much marital property to divvy up. Divorce can effect their life in more ways than what they expect. Along with the financial turmoil, possibility of drug and or alcohol abuse, divorce can effect their sexual development and health, cause more anxiety, depression and self doubt than expected and may cause very unexpected turmoil within a family or within friendships. It is very important for these young people to find a stable source of support to help them through this tough time, to help keep them grounded, from experiencing extreme anxiety and depression, to remind them that it will get easier and they will find a new normal.