Mclanahan Et Al. See Existence Reaction Paper

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Economic factors as Mclanahan et al. demonstrates or other variables such as mother's separation from community or maternal depression may also effect children causing the impact that the researchers saw rather than the divorce / separation factor being the determining variable.

In effect, what the authors demonstrate is that both gender are negatively influenced by divorce and separation, although they had been negatively affected by adverse conditions before divorce / separation had occurred.

To Amato et al. (1995), the situation is not so simple. Reviewing cross-sectional studies between children who remain in conflict-ridden two-parent homes and products of divorced parents who experienced conflict prior to divorce, he discovers that all children are adversely impacted by parental conflict, but that children who remain in the conflict-ridden environment are apt to suffer more than those whose parents are divorced. Much also, however, depended on the intensity of the conflict. In other words, the 12-year longitudinal study of Amato and colleagues (1995) found that children from high-conflict families had higher levels of well being as young adults if their parents divorced than if they stayed together, but in low-conflict families, the reverse was found. Children who experienced low conflict demonstrated higher levels of well being by their families remaining intact than if the parents were divorced. In all marriages where parental conflict was the case and marriages did not end in divorce, conflict was negatively associated with children's well being.

How Amato et al.'s study (1995) contributes and adds to that of Mcclanahans's is that the authors make us see that each and every family instance is different and that numerous variables must be taken into account before passing judgment on the adverse impact of a single parent home on children. Whilst Mclanahan et al. may be correct in assessing that a two-parent home may be better for children's upbringing than that of a one-parent family, nonetheless, previous conditions for children before divorce must be taken into consideration too. It may be that, despite all its demerits, children may profit more in the well-functioning single parent home with preventative measures -- such as counseling in place, more than they would had they remained in their 2-paernt home. The studies of Amato et al. And Cherlin et al.
show that this may well be the case.

Furthermore, Mclanahan et al.'s review is biased in that not all products of single-parent families are as separated from their fathers as Mclanahan et al. state it to be. Mclanahan et al. seems to draw the very worst scenario of a bleak case. Many products of single-parent families may be more adjusted than she makes them out to be with mothers functioning effectively and providing their children with a good example; with children receiving therapy and performing well in school both socially and scholastically and with children receiving help from others in order to deal with their stress. Mclanahan et al. does not mention these possibilities nor their outcome, nor does she consider that in some 2-parent families children may suffer greater economic deprivation from living with a ne'er do well father or with an alcoholic (for instance) than with the mother apart. She merely limits herself to providing pessimistic possibilities and subsequent results.

The study of Amato and colleagues' balances that.

Amato and colleagues' study also adds to that of Cherlin et al. In that whilst Cherlin et al. (2007) compare behavior and academic results of children from intact families to children from divorced families, they fail to compare behavioral and academic outcome of children form intact, but conflictual homes, to children from divorced families who separated from conflictual homes. Had they done so, their studies may have shown different results. Amato et al. add to this research by focusing on children's breakage from environments of marital conflict and the outcome.


Amato, P. et al. (1995). Parental divorce, marital conflict, and offspring well-being.. Social Forces, 73, 895-915

Cherlin, A. et al. (2007) Longitudinal studies of effects of divorce in children in Great Britain and the U.S.A. Science, 252….....

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