After a divorce, couples, and children endure numerous psychological, behavioral, and academic effects. First, both divorced men and women are at the risk of suffering from depression, anxiety, and other psychological disorders. Unlike clinical depression, the trauma following divorce results from adjustment disorder of living a single life. Besides distress, divorced adults may feel anger, shame, confusion, and resentment in their emotional makeup. The psychological effects of depression in adults contribute to mental illnesses and influence alcohol and substance abuse. However, divorce is largely a business transaction due to the money and asset settlement in the process; therefore, adults may focus on the gains or losses accruing the divorce, distracting the emotional distress of the process. On the flip side, divorce can be a big relief to individuals who endure abuse, exploitation, and violation in marriage.
A large proportion of children are challenged by the parenting transition influenced by divorce, potentially affecting their academics, health, and behaviors. Notably, children experience psychological drawbacks of divorce when they have less emotional, practical, and financial assistance from their parents. As children innocently try to comprehend the changing family dynamics and adapt to the transition, they are distracted from their daily focus on learning, affecting their performance. Through divorce, children are emotionally overwhelmed and change their social behaviors. They develop a difficult time interacting with others and engaging in play activities. The lingering effects of divorce include destructive behaviors, guilt, and chronic aggressiveness. In some cases, children express their anger to their parents, themselves, and their peers. Drawing from the unstable relationship of their parents, children lose trust in marriage and the family unit and are likely to stay single or become divorced in their relationships.