The proper intervention can help a child of divorce heal his heart.

Social Interventions for Children of Single Parents

by Jaime Vargas-Benitez

Divorce is difficult, but through the proper intervention, a child can survive and thrive. Every child is different, so it is up to parents to come together and determine what type of intervention is best for their child. It can be hard, since parents often get caught up in the issues that lead to the divorce. A child of divorce can have issues with behavior, depression or anxiety. When he has the proper intervention, that same child can adjust to the divorce and know inside that his parents love him regardless of their marital status.

1. Play-Based Intervention

The Children of Divorce Intervention Program uses a play-based program for children whose parents are going through divorce. The concept of play-based intervention is most appealing to children. Children are accustomed to playing and feel comfortable in a social, fun environment. CODIP contends a child of divorce will open up more and share his feelings more through play than other types of intervention. CODIP says play-based interventions utilize the everyday activities of a child to help him cope with his parents' divorce.

2. In-School Group Intervention

Children of divorce may benefit from social intervention occurring at school. "Psychiatric Times" outlines two programs that utilize in-school support group interventions for children of divorce. One program is called Children's Support Group and offers 14 group sessions focusing on emotional support, parent-child communication and dealing with feelings and emotions that come with divorce. The other intervention program is the Children of Divorce Intervention Project and is a 12-session group program that focuses on helping a child of divorce label and comprehend his feelings. This program focuses on positive reinforcement of the child and helping him accept and love himself through his parents divorce.

3. Private Peer Group Intervention

A child of divorce may feel most comfortable confiding in peers about his feelings concerning his parents' divorce. Private peer group intervention has been shown effective in helping children deal with divorce, according to Medscape's article, "Children of Divorce: Treatment and Intervention." The article explains that peer group intervention often works better because the adults are excluded. Divorce can be an ugly thing, so it is best if a child can work through his feelings if he is not also having to deal with his parents' feelings. A child can connect with peers going through the same issues as himself, which can make coping with divorce much easier.

4. Family-Focused Intervention

The organization, The Future of Children, outlines the concept of family-focused interventions in divorce. They say family intervention is directed at the parents. Through focusing on parenting skills and cooperative parenting, children can see their parents working together on their behalf. When parents put aside their differences for the sake of the children, there can be a greater possibility of the children of divorce thriving instead of suffering. The Future of Children recommends parents utilize whatever type of intervention works best for their children, even if it means coming together as a family in the face of divorce.

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