Divorce Devastates Daughter

It’s a harsh reality when parents are heading for a divorce.  And often overlooked is the negative impact arguing and bickering has on the children. The parents tend to be so consumed with who’s to blame for what, they ignore the kids. And when parents finally conclude a permanent separation is the only option, the children have become accustomed to the fighting, actually numb.

They not only witnessed the gradual disunion, but have also undergone an unhealthy disconnect as well.

This has been the way of life for a fifteen year old girl, literally two years of watching the destruction of a relationship that started with “to death do us part.” So regardless of rings and promises, the divorce is finalized and living arrangements are changing. The mom chooses to move out, far away to another state. The father is keeping the house and supposedly staying with his daughter. The girl is happy not to relocate and go to a new school.

She’s an only child, with no siblings to share her pain, and in her sophomore year of high school.  She is involved in multiple school activities and has a steady boyfriend. She spends most of her spare time at the boyfriend’s house, becoming very close with his parents and siblings.

Rarely does she see her own mother.  And when she is home, the father is usually gone. He has gotten a girlfriend and practically lives with her, only checking in on his daughter occasionally.

Home life for the girl is virtually nonexistent. The house is simply a place to shower and sleep. There are no birthday celebrations, holidays, or movie nights with popcorn and pizza. There isn’t even dinner on the table. Her only company is a sweet old dog that neither parent wants. And it stays that way for three years.

it’s graduation

The girl is eighteen, and the father gives her a week after the commencement ceremony to move out. He’s selling the house, and he’s strict about the timeline. By weeks end, she comes home to an empty house, just her clothes remaining, and no pet to be found. He claims he brought the dog to a farm.

She has no choice but to move to another state and live with her mom, saying goodbye to friends forever, even the boyfriend.

And unfortunately, things don’t change much at the new location. She’s practically still on her own. She gets a job and a used car and spends as little time home as possible.

She even enrolls in college. Surprisingly, throughout this whole ordeal, she has maintained a high grade point average, easily being accepted and securing a student loan.

Four years later, she moves out

She’s twenty-two, with a degree, loan payments, an apartment with a college sweetheart, and a steady job. By all accounts, one would think hers is a success story, a living testament to never giving up in the face of adversity.

However, success is relative, and feelings of abandonment after the divorce aren’t easily ignored.

Her boyfriend becomes her husband, and she becomes a mother. And, as is often the case with first time moms, the stress of caring for a baby becomes overwhelming.  Still, she hardly seeks advice.  She is determined to prove she can give her child the best life possible, never letting there be a question of her love and devotion.

focus on child leaves little time for husband

In addition, the husband’s role as father is limited by her need for control.  So after just four years of marriage, he wants a divorce. He moves out. She understands how the relationship drifted apart and doesn’t begrudge his decision. She’s on her own again.

Her parents, who are both happily remarried, reach out to her. They’ve heard about the husband leaving, and they are concerned for their grandchild and want to be supportive. At first she is reluctant to even acknowledge them as grandparents, but then she thinks about her child.

Children shouldn’t be deprived of grandparents who want to dote on them. Surprise visits, birthday presents, shoulder rides, trips to the ice cream stand, and matinee movies are rites of passage for children and grandparents alike.

the first get together

The grandpas build block houses on the living room floor. The grandmas make chocolate cake and let their grandson lick the spoon. There’s talk of trips to the beach and amusement parks, and even advice about finicky eating, teething, and preschool. And there’s plenty of hugs and kisses for everyone. It’s like one big happy family. But wait…

Is the daughter missing something?  Is it all some kind of practical joke? Who were these parents of hers? Where was their love and concern before? Were they showing off for their new spouses? Did they forget the last ten years?

Where were they when she wanted help with homework, when the power went out in a storm, when she needed a ride to…anywhere, everywhere?  Or how about when she had woman questions, sex questions? And who sat in the stands when she played sports? Who applauded when she received academic awards?

She is willing to forgive, but shouldn’t there at least be an admission of guilt first, some sort of heartfelt apology?

The grandparents have gone home. The grandchild is exhausted and sound asleep, and the daughter is left alone in the dining room, reliving her past, and eating half a chocolate cake. She becomes lost in thought, repeatedly staring at a wedding portrait on the wall and twirling her ring around her finger.

Did her experience as a teenager eventually cause the failure of her marriage? Did she drive a good man away, the father of her child, the love of her life? What kind of future is in store for a single mom and a child with a weekend dad? Is her son going to create walls and end up like her, on a path to his own divorce?

Would a carefully executed Callemonit get her the answers she so badly deserves?

Thinking about Callemonit, what she’d say and how they’d react, becomes exhausting.  When she’s at work, at home, food shopping, stuck in traffic, and even caring for her child, she finds herself lost in thought.

She runs through every scenario, providing both sides of the dialogue.  She always tries to end the daydreams with her parents begging for forgiveness, then mutual tears, and finally big hugs, the genuine kind when you can almost feel each other’s heartbeats.

The daughter experienced a difficult divorce, as most usually are.  And she never quite understood how she became forgotten throughout the process.  She often speculated her parents wanted a “do over,” and she was a reminder of the failed attempt at a lifelong union.

Callemonit might be her only way to end speculation, find closure, and improve her life.

What should be the Callemonit regarding her parents?  Are you the child of divorce and fear heading to the same unfortunate result?  Did you ever get the answers you wanted regarding your parents’ divorce?

Join the Conversation


  1. Hi Cameron.

    I read your comment over at LiveYourLegend and decided to take a look at your site. I’ve just read EVERY post from start to finish, and couldn’t decide which one of your great posts to leave a comment on. My parents went through a divorce and it made me determined not to make the same mistakes. I’ve been married since I was 18 (35 years), so this one made most sense to me.

    I love your writing! I don’t know if your experiences, or your imagination describe these scenarios in such detail, but I’m hooked. You have a way of making life changing moments thought provoking, funny and entertaining. Keep up the good work!

    1. Steve, you might just consider a job as a motivational speaker. I’m talking the big conference hall where they give a lunch break, because your words are a driving force and need to be repeated. I will relish in your thoughtful comment. Thank you so much!

  2. This is an awesome write up, I was glued till the end. I haven’t had any divorce issues, but I can totally relate with stories of friends that have gone through the same issues, it’s really sad because of the emotional stress the go through.

    1. Thank you Chelsea for taking the time to read the story, and I truly appreciate the compliment. I agree, we all tend to know someone who has gone through the hardship of divorce. To often the children of divorce also have difficulties in their commitment as well. My hope is that people express their feelings and gain the knowledge and confidence to succeed in a loving and devoted relationship.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.