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Children's Adjustment to Divorce: Theories, Hypotheses, and Empirical Support

Paul R. Amato
Journal of Marriage and Family
Vol. 55, No. 1 (Feb., 1993), pp. 23-38
DOI: 10.2307/352954
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/352954
Page Count: 16
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Children's Adjustment to Divorce: Theories, Hypotheses, and Empirical Support
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Abstract

I compare five perspectives that account for children's adjustment to divorce. These perspectives refer to the absence of the noncustodial parent, the adjustment of the custodial parent, interparental conflict, economic hardship, and stressful life changes. I derive hypotheses from each perspective and examine available studies to determine the degree of support for each hypothesis. This procedure allows for an overall assessment of how well predictions derived from each position fit with the empirical base. Existing research provides the most consistent and convincing support for the interparental conflict perspective. However, a model combining insights from all five perspectives is necessary to account fully for current research findings.

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