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Don’t stay together for our sake, say children

By OnePlusOne, 08 December 2015 Children, Divorce, Early intervention, Parenting, Separation, Transitions

In a press release ahead of a parliamentary launch of new advice for divorcing parents, family law organisation Resolution have detailed the findings from a ComRes survey of 514 young people aged 14-22 with experience of parental separation.

The key finding is that over 80% of young people survey agreed that despite their feelings at the time, they felt it was ultimately better that their parents divorced rather than stay together unhappily.

We know that troubled partners often make troubled parents[1] and a poorer couple relationship is linked to permissive parenting and more negative parent-child relationships.[2] Conflict between parents can have particularly negative consequences for children. This is why such a large majority of young people may feel better off with separated parents than unhappy ones.

Whilst poor relationship quality is associated with negative outcomes, good quality relationships are linked to well-being and positive outcomes for individuals, their children and families.[3] Focusing efforts on early intervention and encouraging people to think about their relationships earlier is essential in promoting these positive outcomes.

Read more about the Resolution survey here.

[1] Reynolds, J. (2008). Supporting Couple Relationships: A Sourcebook for Practitioners. London: OnePlusOne; Cummings, E. M., & Davies, P. T. (2010). Marital Conflict and Children: An Emotional Security Perspective. New York: Guilford Press.

[2] Carlson, M., & McLanahan, S. (2005). Do good partners make good parents? Relationship Quality and Parenting in Two-Parent Families (Working Paper No. 02-16-FF.). Centre for Research on Child Well-being.: Princeton University.

[3] Vaillant, G. E. (2012). Triumphs of Experience: the men of the Harvard Grant study. London: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.

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