I feel so alone at times. I live with my grandmother at the moment. Neither my mother or father realize what stress I am going through. I still love them a lot. My question is, what are the mother and father’s responsibilities towards the children after the divorce?
In this counseling answer:
• It is absolutely normal to be stressed and lonely in your circumstances. However, you should not burden yourself too much and take out time to de-stress and go out with friends once in a while.
• It is also important not to feel guilty about your parent’s divorce.
• It seems that you are burying yourself in work and study to forget about your negative emotions. It is essential that you take out some time for yourself.
As-Salamu ‘Alaykum Sister,
It is truly heart-wrenching to read your post. It must be a very difficult time for you since you are not just coping with your parent’s separation. Coping with a divorce is possibly the hardest for the children of the family.
Divorce is likely to induce feelings of fear, grief, and guilt among the children. You are a strong and courageous girl who is not just coping with a difficult phase in life but are also earning for your family and studying at the same time. MashaAllah.
It is absolutely normal to be stressed and lonely in your circumstances. However, you should not burden yourself too much and take out time to de-stress and go out with friends once in a while.
It is natural that you love both your parents – no matter what they feel for each other. It is important to know that they both love you too. That is the relationship of parents and children; no matter what, the bond cannot be broken.
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It is also important not to feel guilty about your parent’s divorce. The divorce may cause a feeling of guilt in you or your siblings, you may think that somehow you were the cause, or perhaps you could have prevented the divorce.
However, whatever happened was between your parents and was destined to happen. You were neither the cause nor you could have prevented it, unfortunately.
It is evident that the divorce is having a heavy toll on your personal and social life. Parents often fail to realize the uncertainty and chaos a child feels after divorce. I can imagine the impact the divorce may have had on you – as you are barely out of your teens.
Communicate to your parents
You have mentioned that your parents are oblivious to the stress you are going through, caused by the separation.
I think you should communicate this to your parents. Even if the divorce is final and cannot be undone, it would help you to communicate your feelings and lessen your burden.
In addition, it would also help your parents realize what you are going through.
Sometimes, because of the problems they are facing, parents may tend to get insensitive to their children’s emotional needs such as security, attachment, and unconditional love. However, it does have a toll on the children.
It is also possible that your parents are aware of your feelings but are uncomfortable discussing it openly.
In such a situation, the only way out is to start communicating with your parents. Take out some time each week to visit and talk to your each or at least one of your parents. It will help you feel closer to them.
Gather Social Support
It is important that you have friends; if not many, at least one or two who you can share your emotions and feelings to. Having positive and sincere friends help you to get the negative vibes out of your system and maintain a positive outlook on life.
Take a break once in a while
When a person is stressed, they tend to become a workaholic, to take the stress off the mind. However, this technique often backfires and eventually leads to a nervous breakdown.
It seems that you are burying yourself in work and study to forget about your negative emotions. It is essential that you take out some time for yourself and indulge in any activity that makes you happy.
It could be anything that interests you such as cooking/baking, going out for walks to observe nature, going out with friends, etc.
Pray and supplicate regularly
You have mentioned that you have had a difficult childhood even before the divorce of your parents.
Sister, you do understand that life in this world is a test and is full of trials and hardships. It is a different test for each of us. Allah wants to see how strong our faith is and whether we bow before Him in sadness and in happiness.
Pray and supplicate to Allah to ease your grief and stress and make better decisions for your life in the years to come, InshaAllah. Also, pray for your parents as it will help them and also put your heart at ease.
May Allah bless you with happiness and protect you from all hardships.
Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.