Divorce Research Paper

Divorce Research Paper-26
While single parenthood is not the main nor the sole cause of children's increased likelihood of engaging in one of these detrimental behaviors, it is one contributing factor.Put another way, equalizing income and opportunity do improve the life outcomes of children growing up in single-parent households, but children raised in two-parent families still have an advantage.The central focus of my remarks will be to explicate the role that marital education, family counseling, and related services might play in promoting and strengthening healthy marriages and to discuss what we know about the potential of strategies that seek to ameliorate the key stressors (for example, job loss, lack of income, domestic violence, and childbearing) that make it difficult to form marriages in the first place or act as a catalyst that eventually breaks up existing marriages.

While single parenthood is not the main nor the sole cause of children's increased likelihood of engaging in one of these detrimental behaviors, it is one contributing factor.Put another way, equalizing income and opportunity do improve the life outcomes of children growing up in single-parent households, but children raised in two-parent families still have an advantage.The central focus of my remarks will be to explicate the role that marital education, family counseling, and related services might play in promoting and strengthening healthy marriages and to discuss what we know about the potential of strategies that seek to ameliorate the key stressors (for example, job loss, lack of income, domestic violence, and childbearing) that make it difficult to form marriages in the first place or act as a catalyst that eventually breaks up existing marriages.

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Renewed interest among sociologists and demographers (Furstenberg and Cherlin, 1994) in the link between poverty and single parenthood soon emerged, and as noted above, that work increasingly began building toward the conclusion that family structure did matter (Mc Lanahan and Sandefur, 1994).

Of course, the debate was not just about family structure and income differences; it was also about race and gender.

Proponents of this approach argued that many social policies — welfare and tax policy, for example — were actually anti-marriage, even if research only weakly demonstrated that the disincentives to marry embedded in these policies actually affected behavior.

Moreover, they maintained that social policy should not be neutral — it should encourage and support healthy marriages — and they stressed the link between child poverty and single parenthood and the positive child effects associated with two-parent families.

For example, less than 10 percent of married couples with children are poor as compared with about 35 to 40 percent of single-mother families.

The combination of an alarmingly high proportion of all new births occurring out of wedlock and discouragingly high divorce rates among families with children ensures that the majority of America's children will spend a significant amount of their childhood in single-parent households.

If the failure of parents to marry and persistently high rates of divorce are behind the high percentage of children who grow up in a single-parent family, can and should policy attempt to reverse these trends?

Since Daniel Patrick Moynihan first lamented what he identified as the decline of the black family in his 1965 report, The Negro Family: The Case for National Action, marriage has been a controversial subject for social policy and scholarship.

Moreover, marriage can help children only if the marriage is a healthy one.

While the definition of a “healthy marriage” is itself subject to debate, it is typically characterized as high in positive interaction, satisfaction, and stability and low in conflict.

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