Coping with marital separation: smoothing the transition for parents and children

J Pediatr Health Care. Jul-Aug 1997;11(4):165-74. doi: 10.1016/s0891-5245(97)90123-1.


Divorce is a stressful multistage process that can have long-lasting negative outcomes for parents and children. Pediatric nurse practitioners are often the first health care professionals to be informed of family transitions. Therefore they must be knowledgeable of the impact of divorce on parents and children to implement appropriate interventions to enhance coping outcomes in this population. This article discusses the effects of divorce on parents and children and identifies intervention strategies that can be used by nurse practitioners when dealing with separated families. Description of the COPE Program, an intervention program recently implemented with parents and young children experiencing marital separation, is also highlighted.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Divorce / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Nurse Practitioners*
  • Parenting / psychology*
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Pediatric Nursing / methods*
  • Psychology, Child*
  • Stress, Psychological / prevention & control