Preteens may cope with their parent’s divorce or separation by disguising their feelings and hiding them from everyone. There are many ways they might accomplish this. For instance, they may become more active inside and outside the home, spending time with friends or diving into school or work as a way to cope. Some may even engage in additional household responsibilities or find ways to bring the family together. They also might try to get attention or praise by being overly devoted and helpful to one or both parents. The same actions might also occur at school. Preteens are at an age where they can easily assume an adult-like role. Other “tweens” might go entirely the other direction and act out in the process.
The characteristics of tweens create challenges for parents who are going through a divorce process. Finding a way to cope with their own emotional needs, while also simultaneously providing the same for their preteen child can be difficult. It is important for parents to realize that even though their child is able to verbalize their feelings, they may not be able or ready to manage them on their own.
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