Award Date

12-1-2014

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Marriage and Family Therapy

First Committee Member

Stephen Fife

Second Committee Member

Katherine Hertlein

Third Committee Member

Gerald Weeks

Fourth Committee Member

Jared Lau

Number of Pages

84

Abstract

There has been a wealth of research aimed at developing an understanding of the way in which the experience of divorce impacts children. However, adult children of divorce have been widely underrepresented in this literature, much of which is outdated being at least ten years old. With shifting societal attitudes and the transformation of the family system since the 1990's it is crucial that the research is updated in order to stay up on the way children and families are impacted in today's society. The purpose of this study was to hear directly from adults who experienced their parents' divorce in childhood in order to gain a deeper understanding of their experience and what the resulting impacts have been on their adult lives. Participants identified communication and support as the biggest factors contributing both positively and negatively to their adjustment. Their views of their parents, divorce, and relationships were directly tied to their perceptions of their experience with divorce and how well their parents were able to navigate it.

Keywords

Adult children of divorced parents; Children; Children of divorced parents; Divorce; Families; Family psychotherapy; Therapy

Disciplines

Family, Life Course, and Society | Psychology

Language

English


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