10 Ways Growing Up With Divorced Parents Makes Your Childhood Different

How Growing Up In Two Different Households Changes You

Two Christmases, two Thanksgivings, two birthdays.

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You never think it will be tour family that gets split up. You never think you will have to choose between your parents. All the arguing and fighting. The constantly meeting up with your parents "friends" when it's actually their lawyers. Always worrying about if you are with mom, dad is gonna be jealous or if you're with dad, mom is gonna be jealous. Basically living out of a suitcase most of the time and never being in one house for too long.

1. Switching between parents for each holiday.

If I was with my dad for Christmas, then I was with my mom for Thanksgiving and for New Years, or vice versa. There was always two of each holiday. Not ever being able to just be with everyone you care about, its either dad's side or mom's side. When all you want is to be able to be with both of them.

2. The step parents.

Ohh, there are horror stories about the step-parents, shipping you away, or treating you as slaves. When they try to act as if your dad or mom is no longer present, it turns into an all-out war. They don't respect any of your personal boundaries, and are always criticizing the way you were raised, or always having a double standard when it comes to their own kids and you. While not everyone has had a bad experience with step parents. This is my experience.

3. Living with either your mom or dad, your other parent misses out on a lot.

There is a lot of things that parents miss out on because they don't live close by, like award ceremonies, birthdays, sporting events. Things you wish they could be there for, to be able to share in the everyday things that shape you. To be able to have both people there who love you unconditionally and want nothing but greatness for you.

4. The constant competition between the parents to be the favorite

There is never a time where they aren't trying to compete with each other, or hoping that you will pick them over the other one. You feel like you are being pulled a hundred different directions, and you don't know which way to go. You love both of them so much but it is so difficult to have to pick between them.

5. They are struggling as much as you are.

They lost a family as much as you did, so you gotta try and cut them some slack. Even though you are sad and brokenhearted, they are more sad and brokenhearted. They just lost a husband or a wife, they promised to love each other forever and it didn't end up working out. They need time to heal just like you do. They are doing the best they can.

6. Either having to fly or drive to see your other parent, sucks.

You just wish they were so much closer so you can see them more often but they aren't. There is nothing you can do but be in the car for 4 or 5 hours because there is no other way of getting there. It is just so much harder when they are far away and you just feel like going to see them. You have to deal with the fact you aren't always gonna be able to see them.

7. Hoping you don't forget anything at their house because you won't be able to get it till you go back.

if you leave your favorite pair of shoes or a pair of shorts, you probably won't get it back for a couple weeks, or if you forget your retainer, they are gonna have to be shipped to you. Constantly making sure you don't forget to take something there or bring it back.

8. Missing how your life used to be.

Always wishing that you could have your old house back or wanting to be able to celebrate holidays how you use to be able to. Now its always separate, everything is no matter what. They may get together for like big important things but there will never be a family Christmas. It's just sad, so very sad.

9. Hoping that when you are older and have your own family that this won't happen to you.

Because your parents got divorced. sometimes you think well will get divorced from my spouse when I am older? All you want is to be able to love your spouse and always be able to make it work no matter what. and have a loving family, and not have to rip apart your kids' lives. Be happy with one another always, its a thought and sometimes its a worry.

10. Still knowing that you have a mom and dad that love you, they just aren't together anymore.

They will always be there for you no matter what, them getting divorced doesn't mean that they love you any less. It is always gonna be ok because they are always gonna be there for you, just maybe not at the same time but its unconditional love no matter how far apart you are from each other.

It gets easier as time goes by and eventually you will grow up and everything will be less complicated because you will have your own life. And they will always be there for you no matter what.

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Blocking Toxic Family Members Can Be Just What You Needed

It isn't an easy choice but it can be the most rewarding.

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I haven't written for the Odyssey in quite some time due to this large issue in my life that I feel some people may also need to hear. Watching your parents go through a divorce can be difficult in itself, but what about having to remove one of your parents from your life at the same time? It's something I don't think many people could imagine doing. However, sometimes you are forced into the position between choosing what is best for your mental health or what is expected of you. For me, I realized that I needed to put myself first.

I realized that I am my own person. How I present myself and how I act and what I choose to believe in is how the world perceives me. I was faced with a parent who did not let me be who I am. The way I thought had to be in line with theirs. What I openly spoke about had to be in line with that parent's thoughts. This also, in turn, meant I had to revolve how I was perceived to the world around that parent's family. I had to abide by these societal norms and do what someone else expected of me. I realized that was ludicrous.

This parent was also abusive. They were toxic and manipulative and I could not stand idly by and just take that from them while also trying to become an independent young adult. I was forced to sit and watch one of my parents transform into someone I didn't recognize anymore. I had to watch them ignore any kind of reality checks and continue to feign innocence. I watched one of my parents mentally manipulate people I once called family into believing lies. I kept my head down and shut my mouth and kept taking the abuse. Now I'm at a point where I can confidently say that I am no longer afraid.

I was forced to cut ties with a parent that raised me, cared for me, attended school functions, fixed toys, bought me my first phone. I was forced to chuck out priceless memories for my own sanity. I could not sit idly by and allow myself to endure one more second of lies or abuse. I had to stand up for myself for once in my life and I blocked most of my family. I blocked cousins, aunts, uncles, and godparents. I changed my phone number that I had since 6th grade. I gave no warning and disappeared from my family's lives. Do I have regrets? No. I would do it again if I had to because I am so much stronger than sitting there and taking it.

I will have one less parent at my college graduation, which I am fighting so hard to achieve. I will have one less parent at my wedding. My future children will have one less grandparent. I mope in these thoughts but then I have to remember the other side of things. I will not have an unsupportive parent at my graduation and instead will have those that were there every step of the way. I will lack someone who was toxic at my wedding. My future children will never have to face the same abusive, toxic situations that my parent put me through. It was a difficult decision to make but one that I know in my heart is worthwhile.

Cutting a family member out of your life is difficult enough but cutting a parent is unimaginable. However, no one deserves to go through abusive situations. It shouldn't matter who the person is; if someone is treating you less than you deserve to be treated, they have no use being in your life. You should always be your first priority. You should never have to endure something for the sake of others. I am here to tell you that you are more than that and that cutting out a family member could actually be the best thing for you, even if it's incredibly difficult. I did it and I'm still here. It made me realize who my real family was, and there will never be enough thank you's in the world to show my mother just how much I appreciate her.

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