The Impact of Parental Divorce on a Child Essays

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The Impact of Parental Divorce on a Child

Divorce has increased dramatically since the beginning of this century. Unfortunately, the probability that a marriage will today end in a divorce is a whopping 50 percent. Also, the average duration of a marriage has decreased from 17 years in 1971 to just over 9 years in 1990 (Halonen & Santrock, 1997). Halonen & Santrock claim that although divorce has risen for all socioeconomic groups, those in disadvantaged circumstances have a higher incidence of divorce. Suggesting that marriage at a young age, low educational levels, and low income are associated with increases in divorce. For most, divorce is extremely painful. Unfortunately, children are not excluded from related
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I chose to focus this paper on the impact of parental divorce on a child. To better understand the adjustment process, I decided to interview a 20-year-old woman whom I will call Ann for the purpose of this project. Ann's parents divorced when she was nine. One of the reasons I selected her as my case study was the fact that I was aware that the divorce of her parents was a dramatic change in her family structure as a child well through her adolescent years. I asked Ann a variety of questions about her life prior to, immediately following, and several years after the divorce. I carefully examined family, peer, school, and cultural influences that affected her adjustment. Ann is able to recall vivid details of her extremely authoritarian father and home prior to the divorce. Her parents were immigrants who married at a young age and moved to the United States shortly after. She is the second youngest of six children, five girls and one boy. Ann's father was the dominant parental figure with her mother being submissive to him. He ran the house quite militantly. Every rule was to be followed precisely, without exceptions. Each child was expected to perform outstandingly in school as well as complete all their cleaning chores in the home. Through
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