Volume 13

Effects of Parental Divorce on Offspring’s Future Relationships and Well-being

Molly E. Buchanan

This study was designed to explore how divorce experiences may impact attitudes about offsprings’ well-being and future relationships. A sample of 107 college students, mostly Caucasian females, were presented with surveys consisting of scenarios depicting characters with varying parental-divorce experiences and evaluated perceived fear of intimacy, trust in relationships, parent-child relationship, and life. They also provided information about their own experiences with parental-divorce, intimate relationships, overall life satisfaction, and family closeness. Results indicated that participants perceived fear of intimacy, inability to trust, poor parent-child relationship, and low overall life satisfaction for the character with parental-divorce experience. Both those with personal divorce experience and no experience responded similarly. Results may suggest a general understanding of the potential negative impact of parental divorce on offspring which may be related to the steady decline in divorce.

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