While divorce and separation are stated to be very common in statistics and are often portrayed on TV, the only people who truly know how difficult it is are those who have experienced it in their own homes, and they don’t always get to share their feelings about it.
For Amy, being the child of a divorce caused her to become extremely closed off. Having been her best friend for almost six years, I thought I truly understood the struggle Amy endured. After our interview however, I realized I couldn’t have been more wrong. While her parent’s divorce opened up several wounds for her, it also forced her to hide them all because she didn’t know how to deal with them.
After an emotionally abusive relationship of 13 years, Christian felt it was time to leave his partner and as a result, his two children. While it has been easier for him to open up to friends and family than Amy, he doesn’t get to see his children at all and has missed out on much of their childhood. For him, the thing that has been hidden most is not just his side of the story, but his own children.
I conducted two more interviews with Katarina Pirie and Christina Watson who shared similar views in that children are not fully equipped to handle the divorce of their parents. Pirie even told me that despite her parents divorcing when she was in her early 20s, she never understood how difficult their relationship must have been until she was married herself.
Watson, a mother currently going through separation told me she constantly has to hide her emotions from her children, to shield them. ‘I try to not cry in front of them when I’m upset. I don’t feel like I can give them the whole truth yet so I hide some feelings from them.’
Something Christian and Amy also shared with me was the effect the absence of a parent or child has on their everyday life. Their homes are much quieter now, something you can see in the video, when they aren’t speaking, there is almost no other noise.
Now I know there are still a number of people who have experienced separation and divorce like Amy, Christian, Katarina and Christina have. But at least this piece can shed some light on the common issues divorce and separation creates across all families.
Because many things are hidden in separation and divorce, starting with emotions, perspectives and even children.
- Sound of a man drinking (around 18 second mark) can be found at:
- Sound of a chair being thrown (around 34 second mark) can be found at:
- Sound of high school canteen (around 40 second mark) can be found at:
- Sound of girl saying ‘I love you daddy’ (around 1:52 mark) can be found at:
- Sound of girl saying ‘Good night’ (around 1:58 mark) can be found at:
- Sound of TV and switching channels (around 2:04 mark) can be found at:
Photos: I took all photos appearing in the video, except for the two, which are shown around the 42-second mark and 53-second mark of Amy at school. She provided these.