Any North Carolina parent would agree that parenting is a tough job. It can also be anxiety-inducing. You find that you constantly worry about your child’s well-being.
In the last few years, it seems parents across the country share a common, increasing worry. How is their child’s mental health?
Mental health is a common concern for parents
In 2023, the Pew Research Center collected data that indicates 76% of parents are either very or at least fairly concerned about their children’s mental health. There are a few reasons this concern has increased so sharply over the years, including:
- The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic
- The influence of social media on young people
These are on top of stressors that could already exist in your child’s life, from school or their social life. The combination of various external and internal factors can have a considerable impact on your child’s mental health, leading to symptoms of anxiety or depression.
And if parents are considering a divorce?
Your worries about your child’s mental health might only intensify if you and your spouse decide to divorce. As we have discussed in previous blog posts – and research concurs – a parents’ divorce can certainly affect a child’s mental health.
How you approach the divorce can make a big difference on that front. For example, it can help to:
- Retain proactive mental health support for your child
- Focus on reducing conflict with your spouse, perhaps using mediation
- Always lead with compassion and empathy when it comes to your child
- Check-in with them regularly
Putting your children first in these cases can help you and your spouse effectively navigate the end of your marriage while also protecting your family’s overall health. Your child may still grieve, just as you will, during the divorce. Dealing with tough emotions during this time is normal and expected. However, you and your family can take steps to take care of yourselves and your mental well-being, so this tough time does not lead to more serious issues.