FEATURE — January 23, 2020 at 1:22 pm

Students at MSD deal with having divorced parents

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The uptick in new divorce filings usually continues through the rest of January, largely due to the hope of a clean, fresh start in the new year. (Rubberball/Mike Kemp/Getty Images/TNS)

Divorce is defined as a legal separation of marriage between two people, by a court or other competent body. Every 13 seconds, one divorce happens in the United States, according to Wilkinson and Finkbeiner Family Law attorneys. Divorce not only affects the couple, but the family and friends around them. 

While some students at MSD who have divorced parents have different living situations, the majority have grown accustomed to the rotation between each parent.

A change in routine is bound to happen. Many students see each parent on a week-to-week basis, while others may go between each parent every month. 

“I live with my mom Monday through Friday and every other weekend, while my dad only has me certain weekends,” junior Chloe Rogers said.

Families with divorced parents may also include one parent that lives in a completely different state, causing the child to live with just one parent for the majority of time. Some students enjoy switching between two parents, while others have issues doing so.

“I spend half of a week at my mom’s and half at my dad’s, we also split each holiday so everything is equal. I have mostly gotten used to having divorced parents since I have lived in this situation for 10 years,” freshman Emma Betancourt said.

When switching between households, things can get confusing. Forgetting something at the wrong house or not having the right piece of clothing can be very stressful. 

“My dad doesn’t really have custody over me and my stepfamily in Louisiana and Minnesota. I go to visit them often during special occasions. When my parents got divorced I was nine years old… as I got older the whole situation just hit me at once and it was crazy,” freshman Kate Becker said.

Being a child in a divorced family can affect school life in many different ways Having to remember what to bring and when to bring it can cause a distraction in a student’s academics. 

Talking to others who deal with the same situation or talking to a therapist are a few ways to cope with the new adjustments.

“It was the best decision for our family in the long run, even though everyone wasn’t happy for a long time when the divorce first happened,” Becker said.

Students of all ages are affected by the divorce of their parents in different manners, learning to cope and deal with the new adjustments are the first step to improving.

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Amber Mader is a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. She loves trying new foods, going on adventures and hanging out with friends. Her favorite subject is math.

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