A survey (by parenting website Netmums, polled about 1,000 divorced parents and 100 children aged eight to 18 from broken homes)shows that around three-quarters of divorced parents are inclined to believe that their children were able to cope up well with their separation.
However, the poll divulges that many children turn to drinking and drugs in order to manage the breakdown of their family. Some children develop deep emotional stress and suicidal tendencies as their coping up a mechanism to the divorce.
The survey, which involves 1,000 divorced parents and 100 children with ages ranging from 8 to 18, reveals that one out of twenty children had turned to alcohol just to ease out the pain that they are suffering. One third if the surveyed children are devastated by the divorce and considers their parents that they do not love them. Some even blame themselves for the separation of their parents.
The alarming data that was revealed in this survey is the indication that only a few number of these children were able to speak freely and honestly on what they feel with regards to the divorce with their parents. Some children say that their parents are too busy to listen to them, while some say that they are not given the opportunity to have a say or to express their point of view over the separation.
Divorce in Australia is governed by the Family Law Act 1975. The law on divorce revolves around the no-fault divorce principle in which the court will no longer hear and consider the reasons on why the couple decided to separate. The sole ground for divorce under the Family Law Act is the establishment of the fact that the Marriage has broken down irretrievably. The marriage must be irreconcilable and that the parents are unlikely to get together again. Applicants in a Divorce case must show that the couple have been separated for at least 12 months and 1 day to show the Court that indeed the marriage has broken down irretrievably.
The Court, however, will extend all the protection afforded by law to the children in a Divorce. Couples who are planning to divorce must show the Court that they have made a sound and reasonable arrangement for the general welfare and best interest of their child.
They must show that a parenting plan for their children has been agreed upon prior to their application for divorce. The child support of each child must be well formulated and agreed upon by both parties. In case they fail to settle it amicably, the Court may set a hearing on that matter before proceeding to the other aspect of the divorce.