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The effects of marital discord and dissolution on adult offspring’s romantic relationships

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  1. Abstract.
  2. Olson and DeFrain (2006) belief in multiple reasons for the high divorce rate in the United States.
  3. Divorce - disruption of families.
  4. Review of literature regarding divorce and children.
    1. The findings of Darlington's study.
  5. Clinical modality for intergenerational transmission of divorce.
  6. Conclusion and future implications.

Current psychological research suggests divorce is transmitted from generation to generation, although causation of this transmission has yet to be proven. This paper applies existing research on the intergenerational transmission of divorce and its effect on adolescent and adult romantic relationships to three hypotheses attempting to explain why offspring of divorced couples have more dysfunctional romantic relationships and are more likely to divorce than children of intact families. Each hypothesis is based on one of three theories of learning: behaviorist, social learning, and psychosocial. With no single theory explaining all the facets of this multi-dimensional problem, the research suggests that it is likely a combination of factors relating to all three theories resulting in the transmission of divorce between generations

[...] Why we love: The nature and chemistry of romantic love. New York: Owl Books. Olsen, D. H. & DeFrain, J. (2006). Marriage & families: Intimacy, diversity and strengths (5th Ed.). New York, NY: McGraw Hill. Riggio, H. R. (2004). Parental marital conflict and divorce, parent-child relationships, social support, and relationship anxiety in young adulthood. Personal Relationships 99-114. Shulman, S.; Scharf, M.; Lumer, D.; & Maurer, O. (2001). Parental divorce and young adult children's romantic relationships: Resolution of the divorce [...]

[...] Programs requiring divorcing parents with minor children to attend a half-day parent education seminar must be expanded to teach strategies for helping children and adolescents residing in the home, regardless of the child's age, to process the parental divorce and develop positive relationships with parents to reduce the effects of the divorce. By doing so, the risk of divorce is reduced for future generations. References Amato, P. R. (1996). Explaining the intergenerational transmission of divorce. Journal of Marriage and the Family 628-640. [...]

[...] Defined in the unconscious, the accumulation of our childhood and adolescence is what we, as human beings, bring to the table of our romantic relationships (Fisher, 2004). If one can discover programmed quirks and idiosyncrasies and address and resolve unconscious life crises, his or her love map's path can be altered, but only if it is marked with the origin and destination. Thus, counseling for children in divorcing families needs to address issues concerning divorce and to have behavior modification work begun to reinforce positive, pro-social behaviors. [...]

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