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The Effects of Divorce on Early Adult Development


Divorce is a significant life experience that affects people emotionally and psychologically, especially in the formative years of adulthood. Early adulthood is a crucial period distinguished by various transformations, including those about education, expert judgment, and the formation of intimate relationships. Maternal divorce during this development period can have long-lasting impacts on a person’s physical, cognitive, and socioemotional growth (Roper et al., 2019). This research will utilise pertinent theoretical methodologies to analyse the consequences of divorce on early adult development and comprehend their implications. It will also contain scientific, peer-reviewed papers and neighbourhood community resources to help and offer answers for persons dealing with this problem.

Elaboration on Early Adulthood and Divorce

Generally gauging from ages 18 to 29, early adulthood is a crucial period of exploration, self-discovery, and identity confirmation. It’s characterised by major life decisions similar to career choices, romantic connections, and decisions related to advanced education. Early adulthood is a time of increased autonomy and independence, and individuals develop their values and beliefs while transitioning from adolescence to adulthood. Divorce during this experimental stage can disrupt the stable environment that individuals calculate on to facilitate their journey into adulthood. The dissolution of their parent’s marriage can lead to feelings of instability, confusion, and emotional distress. During this time, individuals also form their own beliefs about connections and marriage, and the divorce experience can shape their attitudes toward commitment and trust.

Application of Theoretical Approach

Erik Erikson’s psychosocial theory is a theoretical framework ideally suited to studying early adulthood and divorce. Erikson believed that to attain healthy development. People must effectively navigate a certain psychosocial crisis associated with each stage of life. The psychological crises in early adulthood are “intimacy vs. isolation.” In this stage, developing lasting, committed relationships with others is important (Hammersmith, 2020). Their difficulties in their family of origin may have made it harder for those whose parents split when they were young adults to build closeness. The effects of parental divorce may cause emotions of loneliness, commitment anxiety, and difficulty building trustworthy connections.

Physical, Cognitive, and Socioemotional Impacts of Divorce

The impacts of separation during early adulthood can appear in different parts of a singular’s life. Genuinely, the pressure and inner disturbance brought about by separation can prompt expanded hazards of medical conditions, like sleep deprivation, migraines, and debilitated invulnerable frameworks. Intellectually, people might encounter trouble focusing and deciding, as their viewpoints might be distracted by the profound outcome of separation. The pressure and close-to-home weight can likewise influence scholarly and vocational pursuits, thwarting self-awareness and accomplishment. Socioemotionally, the effect of parental separation can be significant (Roper et al., 2019). Sensations of melancholy, outrage, and misfortune are normal, as people might feel a crack in their family structure. Early grown-ups may battle with their character and self-esteem, and their capacity to trust others and take part in significant connections can be compromised.

Integration of Scholarly Peer-Reviewed Article

The researchers examine the long-term effects of parental divorce on young people’s psychological health and relationship development in their scholarly peer-reviewed work, “The Long-Term Effects of Parental Divorce on Early Adult Development,” written by Garay et al. in 2021. The researchers discovered strong evidence through a thorough investigation that those who suffered parental divorce in their early adult years reported higher levels of mental discomfort. These people also mentioned having a difficult time developing and maintaining close connections. The paper’s findings have important ramifications and offer insight into the long-lasting effects of divorce outside of childhood and adolescence. It highlights how early divorce experiences may mould and impact a person’s emotional and relationship landscape into adulthood.

The discoveries of the review feature the significance of focusing closer on the mediation and backing administrations accessible to youthful grown-ups adapting to the impacts of parental separation. This study adds to the collection of information on the point as a companion checked on paper and gives wise data to guides, lawmakers, and the people who work in the psychological wellness field (Garay et al., 2021). Practitioners can better address the particular difficulties experienced by these people by modifying their treatments and support services by identifying and comprehending the long-term impacts of parental divorce on early adult development. Overall, this research broadens our understanding of the intricate linkages between parental divorce and its long-term impacts on young people’s relationships and psychological health.

Verifiable Local Community Resources

In times of divorce during early adulthood, accessing verifiable local community resources can be pivotal for support and guidance. One similar valuable resource is the Mindfulness Counseling Center, which specialises in providing counselling services that feed specifically to the requirements of young grown-ups navigating the complications of divorce. This centre offers individuals a safe and confidential space to explore their feelings, manage challenges, and develop effective management strategies (Hammersmith, 2020). In addition to professional comfort, the Facebook Support Group is an accessible platform for youthful adults to connect with others who have endured divorce.

Regular meetings grease meaningful conversations, allowing individuals to share their stories, exchange advice, and find comfort in the understanding and empathy of peers facing analogous situations. The sense of belonging and camaraderie fostered within this support group can significantly contribute to the mending process. These local community resources address divorce’s emotional and psychological impact on early adult development (Roper et al., 2019). By offering customised support and opportunities for social connection, they aim to promote mending, particular growth, and resilience among those going through this challenging life transition. Verifiable local community resources like the Mindfulness Counseling Center and the Facebook Support Group can play a crucial part in helping young adults navigate the aftermath of divorce and recapture a sense of stability and well-being.

APA Ethical Standards and Best Practices

Adherence to APA ethical standards and best practices is crucial while tackling the problem of reducing the impact of divorce on early adult development. When doing research or providing counselling help to people impacted by divorce, maintaining confidentiality and gaining informed permission are key norms to follow (Hammersmith, 2020). Maintaining participant anonymity throughout the process develops trust and encourages moral behaviour. Mental health practitioners must also demonstrate cultural sensitivity and competency when working with various communities.

Professionals can better appreciate the unique issues they could face by acknowledging and recognising the cultural quirks and histories of the persons involved. This strategy guarantees that treatments and support are customised to fit each individual’s unique requirements, eventually fostering more efficient and moral help (Garay et al., 2021). Professionals may provide a secure and respectful atmosphere for persons going through the stress of divorce by incorporating APA ethical principles and best practices into the settlement. By guaranteeing ethical behaviour across all stages of study and intervention, adhering to these standards protects the well-being and dignity of people engaged and promotes the integrity of the profession.


Early adult divorce can significantly and permanently affect a person’s physical, cognitive, and socioemotional development. By utilising Erik Erikson’s psychosocial theory, we may better comprehend young adults’ difficulties while resolving the psychosocial crisis of closeness—isolation. We may provide evidence-based assistance and workable solutions for persons affected by divorce by combining scientific peer-reviewed papers and employing local community resources (Roper et al., 2019). Despite the difficulties brought on by divorce, mental health practitioners may aid in the healing process and encourage healthy early adult development by adhering to APA ethical standards and best practices. As a culture, we must understand how crucial it is to give people in their early adulthood enough resources and support to enable them to successfully negotiate this major life event and create satisfying relationships for the future.


Garay, J.L. et al. (2021) ‘Intra-uterine effects on adult muscle strength’, Early Human Development, 163, p. 105490. doi:10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2021.105490.

Hammersmith, A.M. (2020) ‘Effects of divorce on very young children’, Encyclopedia of Infant and Early Childhood Development, pp. 513–521. doi:10.1016/b978-0-12-809324-5.23565-7.

Roper, S.W., Fife, S.T. and Seedall, R.B. (2019) ‘The intergenerational effects of parental divorce on young adult relationships’, Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 61(4), pp. 249–266. doi:10.1080/10502556.2019.1699372.


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