Dealing with extramarital affairs is not something that even adults are able to handle properly, therefore, to expect children to understand the implication of such a situation in the family and react in a proper manner, is being unreasonable with the child. Even in situations, where the parents decide to keep the child away from the effects and knowledge of the affair, still in the long run, the disruptions in the normal family tend to eventually affect the child, and in almost all of the cases, have negative effects on the child.
Some of the most common problems which can be observed in children who have to deal with extramarital affairs in their family are as follows:
Sense of Rejection
In a marriage when one of the partners get involved in an extramarital affair, that partner starts to spend more time outside the house and gets less involved with the happening within the family and even the life of his or her own child. Children are quite sensitive in nature and are able to immediately feel this changed behavior of his or her parent and start to feel neglected. This feeling of neglecting can result in the child becoming frightened by even small things; he or she may start wetting the bed once again, be become more clingy towards the other parent or may exhibit this feeling in many other similar forms.
Low Self Esteem
As a result of the affair, there may be constant fights happening in the house between the couple and the child may start to take these fights as his own mistake and go into a sort of depression or develop a sense of low self-esteem.
Unable to understand the negative atmosphere in the house, many children start to act out both at home and at school in order to draw more attention towards themselves. This acting out by the child is his or her way of telling everyone that they are not happy about the situation at their home and it is just that since they are not able to understand the exact problem, hence they are communicating their pain in this form.
Distorted Understanding of Family and Commitments
If the child is of an age where he or she is able to understand the meaning of an extramarital affair, but is still too young to understand the various deep implications of these relationships, he or she may develop the wrong understanding of family life and commitment. They may start to feel that these affairs outside of marriage are pretty normal and for them family values may become insignificant.
A child deserves a nice home where he or she feels loved and protected. Exposing the child to these harsh realities of life is simply being cruel to him. Therefore, if not for your marriage and your partner, one should refrain from engaging in these extramarital affairs for the sake of the wellbeing of their children. A child, who is raised in a family where the parents do not have a good relationship, tends to develop an inherent anger towards his or her family which stays with them for the rest of their life.