The Daily Mail has this week reported that, on average, new parents end up rowing every other day. I laughed heartily when I read this and actually thought to myself “is that all?!”
As a relatively new mum myself, I can whole heartedly relate to this article which explains that the majority of arguments centre on who should be changing the next nappy and whose turn it is to deal with the night feed.
Most parents put this increase in marital animosity down to being stressed and exhausted in the early stages of parenthood. Often, once the early months have passed, most of us will get into the swing of family life and either, things become easier as we get used to the increased pace of life, or otherwise we simply learn to sleep walk through life quite effectively!
On a more serious note though, more parents are separating today than ever before, with one in four of us will separate and ultimately divorce. The reason or reasons for this are not known but it is probably due to a combination of factors such as financial stress and the pressure of trying to juggle work, home and family. What is a fact though is that this leaves hundreds of children in the middle of parents who are in the process of separation and this is not often a pleasant place to be.
In response to this, a group of twenty students from two schools are launching a support group for children who find themselves stuck in the middle of separated parents. The aim of the group is to offer children a place to seek reassurance from their peers and discuss their experiences.
www.voicesinthemiddle.org.uk is the website set up by these children as a spring board for the group, which is supported by family law judges and family lawyers, as we all become more aware of the impact of separation on children.
Due to budget cuts, there is no government funding to assist with this issue, so Kids In The Middle are doing all they can to raise funds to allow them to deliver this much needed service. One of the fund raising events will involve two children from separated families “leap-frogging” from their mothers’ to their fathers’ homes, which they say represents the way that they feel they live life.
While many of us look back and laugh at the rows over the dirty nappies and who gets up in the middle of the night to look after the children, the impact of unrest between parents is an issue which needs to be addressed. Separation is but one consequence of the unrest so, all credit to the kids who have taken it upon themselves to deal with this problem, where the adults have so miserably failed.
If you have concerns about the way a separation is affecting your children or you need advice about divorce or separation generally, please contact Venisha Shah on 020 8899 6620 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org