High-Conflict Divorce: Therapeutic Approaches for Children
Hu, Fangzhao (Helena)
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Divorce can be a disturbing experience for people, especially children. The aim of this capstone is to establish some of the therapeutic approaches that can be used in assisting children exposed to high-conflict divorce. The capstone employs a literature review approach in achieving the overall aim. Generally, it is established that high-conflict divorce has a wide range of negative implications to children including high levels of anxiety and depression. The capstone also reveals that if these negative outcomes are not addressed, then children face a very high risk of developing even more serious psychological conditions in future. Numerous research studies have sought to establish some of the approaches that can be used in overcoming the identified challenges. These interventions include play therapy, family-focused therapy, and teaching children how to cope. A keener evaluation, however, reveals that each of these interventions has a number of inherent weaknesses that must be addressed by researchers and mental health practitioners. This identification of limitations lays the foundation for recommending actions such as putting more focus on providing the identified interventions proactively in schools and homes. In that regard, it is proposed that therapies such as play therapy and the teaching of coping skills should be made part of academic curriculum if the adverse outcomes of high-conflict divorce are to be effectively avoided.