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Parental Divorce and Attitudes toward Marriage and Family Life

Paul R. Amato
Journal of Marriage and Family
Vol. 50, No. 2 (May, 1988), pp. 453-461
DOI: 10.2307/352010
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/352010
Page Count: 9
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Parental Divorce and Attitudes toward Marriage and Family Life
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Abstract

Respondents from a national survey of Australians between the ages of 18 and 34 who experienced parental divorce as children were compared with respondents who grew up in continuously intact families or who experienced parental death as children, on eight measures of attitudes toward marriage and family life. Compared with respondents from intact families, those from divorced families held more negative attitudes toward their families of origin. Few differences emerged between groups in their attitudes toward the advantages and disadvantages of marriage, living together, or singlehood, once other family-of-origin variables were statistically controlled. Examination of individual items from a family values scale revealed that adults from divorced families of origin held relatively complex views of marriage: they valued marriage but were aware of its limitations and tolerant toward its alternatives.

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