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Family "Decline" and the Subjective Well-Being of Adolescents

María Teresa Muñoz Sastre and Gaëlle Ferrière
Social Indicators Research
Vol. 49, No. 1 (Jan., 2000), pp. 69-82
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27522424
Page Count: 14
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Family "Decline" and the Subjective Well-Being of Adolescents
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Abstract

The goal of the present study was to determine to what extent an adolescent's subjective well-being is affected when changes in family structure reach a breaking point and the child can no longer stay with his family, but must be institutionalized. The participants were one hundred male and female adolescents, 12 to 19 years of age, 50 of which lived in children's homes, but were originally from 50 different families, and 50 of which lived at home with their parents. Two questionnaires were administered: (a) the French adaptation of the Life Satisfaction Scale (Blais et al., 1989) and (b) a questionnaire containing statements related to level of satisfaction in several areas, notably family relationships, body image, work and schooling, and leisure activities. The difference between the two groups was considerable, with more than one point separating the mean levels of satisfaction of the two groups (20% of the total length of the scale employed). A structural analysis of the results showed the direct or indirect influence of three factors related to placement in a children's home on life satisfaction: a direct effect of placement in a children's home, an indirect effect passing through the satisfaction with family life, and an indirect effect passing through the personal growth.

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