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J Abnorm Child Psychol. 1993 Feb;21(1):119-34.

Parental functioning and children's adjustment in families of divorce: a prospective study.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15260.


This paper prospectively examined relations between marital status, predivorce parenting practices, and children's adjustment, using data from the New York Longitudinal Study (NYLS). Prospective analyses of children's predivorce adjustment indicated that neither boys nor girls showed more problematic behavior prior to parental separation, and only boys had more difficulties after divorce. However, parents of to-be-divorced families reported more difficulties in childcare practices before divorce than did parents of always-married families. Parenting difficulties in to-be-divorced families were found consistently for boys but not for girls. Results suggest that the difficulties found among boys after divorce may be linked with parenting problems that begin before divorce.

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