It has long been known that children can suffer during a bitter divorce. Some parents might not realize the full extent that this can impact their children. A recent study notes that children can suffer from decreases in immunity when their parents are going through a bitter divorce.
The reason for this dip in immunity is that stress can lead to troubles with immunity. When there is a stress at a young age, the person is more likely to suffer from immunity weakness later in life. This could manifest into chronic conditions that could negatively impact the child’s health for his or her entire adulthood.
The study that came to this conclusion used 200 adults. The group was exposed to the common cold virus. Researchers found that the rate at which these adults came down with the virus after exposure was higher in the adults who reported their parents had a contentious divorce.
In fact, the difference was so big that it showed how large the connection between a parent’s relationship with each other and a child’s immunity throughout life really is. The participants who had parents that didn’t speak during the participant’s childhood came down with the cold at a rate that was three times that of participants who had parents who remained married.
This study is a good reminder for parents that there isn’t any need to fight tooth and nail during the divorce. Behaving in a civil manner and thinking about the children first, during and after the divorce might help your child out now and well into the future.
Source: Chicago Tribune, “When divorce turns bitter, kids’ immunity may pay a price,” June 08, 2017