Stage 1:  Denial and Isolation

Mom and Dad will get back together.

Stage 2:  Anger

How can my parents do this to me?  They betrayed me.  I am supposed to have two parents.  If they really loved me, they would stay together.

Stage 3:  Bargaining

If I am really good, maybe they will get back together.  Children see parents as powerful people that have command of things.  When divorce happens, they blame themselves.  Self-blame is a way to get control over things they feel they can't explain.

Stage 4:  Depression

The child experiences intense pain, as he/she realizes the reality of the situation.  The security of parents being together, and that life is okay, is gone.  The emptiness inside can't be filled.

Stage 5:  Acceptance

Mom and Dad are not going to get back together again.  Divorce is permanent.  It's okay that my friends know my parents are divorced.