A legal change allowing couples to file for a ‘no-fault’ divorce in England and Wales, in effect from 6 April 2022, is welcomed by all of us at Dad.info and Spurgeons.
It’s an important step.
Ian Soars, CEO of Dad.info says, “The new ‘no-fault’ law removes the need to assign blame to one party. Hopefully helping to reduce the level and length of conflict during a separation.
Two out of three (59%) men and a quarter (24%) of women surveyed spent a period of time during the separation where they did not see their child/ren. The duration of this separation is longer for men. With a modal average of 1-3 months for men and 1-3 weeks for women.
Ian says, “Imagine a world where people going through a separation knew how to divorce better. Were equipped to put their children first. Successfully managed a cooperative parenting relationship. That’s an ideal that we want to help parents and children move closer to. Ultimately all the research shows this is what’s best for the children involved.”
Why do we care?
Family breakdown and relationship issues is also the leading cause behind Fegans services school counselling referrals. Based on approximately 450 sessions per week.
Sonia Winifred, a Fegan school counsellor for Spurgeons Children’s Charity, says, “The impact of family breakdown and divorce can have a devastating impact on the child or young person’s mental health. They begin to display self-doubt, anxiety and blame themselves for the parents’ separation. Most often the child or young person becomes the peace maker, holding on to each parent’s welfare, which leads to ongoing trauma for them.”
Parents need more support
Ian’s point is clear. “Separation from a parent, unless there is abuse involved, is a great loss to child/ren and they need support from the very start of the process. That stands true for the parents as well.”
We offer a free ‘Parenting after Separation’ resource on DAD.info. Sign up for support going through a separation. We particularly encourage fathers to engage with the course.
Parents seeking peer support, resources and advice on separation and divorce are welcome in our forum.