Parental divorce and the well-being of children: a meta-analysis

Author: Amato, P.R.; Keith, B.

Description: This meta-analysis involved 92 studies that compared children living in divorced single-parent families with children living in continuously intact families on measures of well-being. Children of divorce scored lower than children in intact families across a variety of outcomes, with the median effect size being .14 of a standard deviation. For some outcomes, methodologically sophisticated studies yielded weaker effect sizes than did other studies. In addition, for some outcomes, more recent studies yielded weaker effect sizes than did studies carried out during earlier decades. Some support was found for theoretical perspectives emphasizing parental absence and economic disadvantage, but the most consistent support was found for a family conflict perspective.

Subject headings: Adaptation, Psychological; Adolescent; Child; Child, Preschool; Divorce–psychology; Female; Humans; Male; Meta-Analysis as Topic; Parent-Child Relations; Personality Development

Publication year: 1991

Journal or book title: Psychological Bulletin

Volume: 110

Issue: 1

Pages: 26-46

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Type: Journal Article

Serial number: 277