A body of research has shown that divorce has negative effects on a childs psychological, emotional, and physical health and well-being.
Divorce is shown to have more severe financial consequences for women than for men. Research has found that a womans disposable income drops about 30 percent after a divorce while a mans falls about 10 percent (Stroup and Pollock, 1994).
Men who divorce suffer greater health problems than their married counterparts. A research review done by Robert Coombs of UCLA found married adults generally reported healthier, longer, and more satisfied lives than their unmarried peers (Coombs, 1991).
Sara McLanahan of Princeton University concluded in her 1991 study that “adolescents in mother-only families are more susceptible to peer influence than those living with both natural parents.”
“Research has documented that children without fathers more often have lowered academic performance, more cognitive and intellectual deficits, increased adjustment problems, and higher risks for psychological development problems.” This conclusion was reached by George Rekers, a practicing clinical psychologist and professor at the University of South Carolina medical school, in a 1986 testimony before the Select Committee on Children, Youth, and Families.
The conclusions of these researchers are just examples of the volumes of social science research that has documented the unquestionable and unequaled goodness and benefit brought to children through families headed by their married mother and father.
While many Washington state parents would agree that marriage is a lifetime commitment, as evidenced by their agreement and disagreement with the statements below, the number of divorces and percentage of children living in single-parent families continue to climb. Husbands and wives need to see that there is hope for their marriagethat there are people who care and tools that can help them not just survive but thrive in their commitment to one another and their children.
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