Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce...

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Page 1: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

DivorceDivorce

Family SociologyFamily Sociology

Page 2: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

DivorceDivorceHow has the divorce rate changed How has the divorce rate changed over time?over time?

How is the divorce rate measured?How is the divorce rate measured?

Who is more likely to divorce?Who is more likely to divorce?

What are the social and economic What are the social and economic explanations for higher divorce explanations for higher divorce rates?rates?

What is the effect of divorce on What is the effect of divorce on adults and children?adults and children?

Page 3: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Measuring Measuring DivorceDivorce

Crude divorce rate Crude divorce rate – the number of – the number of divorces per 1000 in the population.divorces per 1000 in the population.

Why is this a poor measure of divorce?Why is this a poor measure of divorce?

Crude divorce rate is a faulty measure Crude divorce rate is a faulty measure because it includes members of the because it includes members of the population not at riskpopulation not at risk

Refined divorce rate Refined divorce rate – best measure; – best measure; the number of divorces per 1000 the number of divorces per 1000 married women over age 15married women over age 15

Page 4: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Measuring Measuring DivorceDivorce

Current Divorce RatesCurrent Divorce Rates

Between 1960 and 1979, the Between 1960 and 1979, the refined divorce rate rose from refined divorce rate rose from 9.2 to 22.89.2 to 22.8

From 1979 to 1996, the rate From 1979 to 1996, the rate dropped from 22.8 to 19.5dropped from 22.8 to 19.5

In 1997 the refined divorce In 1997 the refined divorce rate was 19.8rate was 19.8

Page 5: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Annual Divorce Rate per 1,000 MarriagesUnited States, 1860-2010

Page 6: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Measuring Measuring divorcedivorce

Women marrying today have about a Women marrying today have about a 50 percent chance of divorcing – but 50 percent chance of divorcing – but that is if trends remain the samethat is if trends remain the same

50 percent of first marriages will 50 percent of first marriages will EVENTUALLY end in divorce – but EVENTUALLY end in divorce – but remember that is over the lifetime of remember that is over the lifetime of a marriage!a marriage!

Divorce could occur in the 2Divorce could occur in the 2ndnd year of year of marriage or the 10marriage or the 10thth year. year.

Page 7: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Measuring Measuring divorcedivorce

What is the divorce rate? What is the divorce rate? In a given year your risk of divorce is much In a given year your risk of divorce is much

lower than 50 percent!lower than 50 percent!

We use the We use the refined divorce raterefined divorce rate: the : the rate of divorces per 1,000 married women per rate of divorces per 1,000 married women per yearyear

For example, in 2001 about 20 out of 1,000 For example, in 2001 about 20 out of 1,000 married women got divorced married women got divorced

In other words, 2 percent received a divorce in In other words, 2 percent received a divorce in 20012001

Page 8: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Measuring Measuring divorcedivorce

For those in their first marriage, who For those in their first marriage, who did divorce…did divorce…

They were married, on average, 8 yearsThey were married, on average, 8 years

Source: http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p70-125.pdf

Page 9: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Latest data on Marriage Latest data on Marriage and Divorce Rateand Divorce Rate

http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/divorce.htmdivorce.htm

Page 10: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Geography of Geography of DivorceDivorce

The divorce rate varies by stateThe divorce rate varies by state

Which state(s) do you think have a higher Which state(s) do you think have a higher divorce rate and why?divorce rate and why?

Nevada…easy divorce lawsNevada…easy divorce laws

Which state(s) have lower divorce rates and Which state(s) have lower divorce rates and why?why?

Massachusetts – may have to do with Massachusetts – may have to do with stricter alimony laws or high percentage of stricter alimony laws or high percentage of CatholicsCatholics

Source: Source: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvss/divorce_rates_90_95_http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvss/divorce_rates_90_95_99-10.pdf99-10.pdf

Page 11: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

“I’m surprised I’m still single, I thought I’d be divorced by now”

Page 12: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

How is divorce related to How is divorce related to social, demographic, or social, demographic, or

economic changes?economic changes?Social norm change: As more people divorceSocial norm change: As more people divorce Response: The stigma associated with divorce Response: The stigma associated with divorce

lessenslessens

Economic change: Increase in women working for Economic change: Increase in women working for paypay Response: Women can afford to leave unhappy Response: Women can afford to leave unhappy

marriagesmarriages

Demographic change: Increased incidence of Demographic change: Increased incidence of divorce divorce Response: More children will grow up in single-Response: More children will grow up in single-

parent familiesparent families

Page 13: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Why did the divorce rate Why did the divorce rate increase from 1960s – increase from 1960s –

1980s?1980s?No one can say for sure what No one can say for sure what explanation is more important.explanation is more important.

Some argue that the introduction of Some argue that the introduction of

no-fault divorce lawsno-fault divorce laws are responsible for are responsible for the rise in divorces. the rise in divorces.

No-fault divorce laws No-fault divorce laws made it easier to made it easier to seek a divorceseek a divorce

No fault divorce – distribution of marital No fault divorce – distribution of marital property is no longer based on faultproperty is no longer based on fault

Instead distribution is equitable – each Instead distribution is equitable – each person gets an equal shareperson gets an equal share

Page 14: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Why did the divorce rate Why did the divorce rate increase from 1960s – increase from 1960s –

1980s?1980s?1) Attitudes towards divorce have changed as 1) Attitudes towards divorce have changed as divorce has become more common – i.e. the divorce has become more common – i.e. the stigma attached to divorce has lessened stigma attached to divorce has lessened

2) More young married women in the labor 2) More young married women in the labor forceforce

Now that wives can support themselves – as Now that wives can support themselves – as they are more likely to be employed - they they are more likely to be employed - they have an alternative staying in an unhappy have an alternative staying in an unhappy marriagemarriage

In sum – today - not necessarily more In sum – today - not necessarily more unhappy marriages… unhappy marriages…

Now it is easier to leave an unhappy Now it is easier to leave an unhappy marriagemarriage

Page 15: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Individual Individual characteristicscharacteristics associated associated with divorcewith divorce

AgeAge

People who marry as teenagers are more People who marry as teenagers are more likely to divorce than those who marry at likely to divorce than those who marry at older agesolder ages

Why?Why?You will likely still be developing and changing in You will likely still be developing and changing in major ways when you are a teenmajor ways when you are a teenANDANDMany teen marriages result from an unintended Many teen marriages result from an unintended pregnancy – not a good basis for a marriagepregnancy – not a good basis for a marriage

HOWEVER new research shows that HOWEVER new research shows that marrying after age 35 is linked to higher marrying after age 35 is linked to higher rate of divorcerate of divorce

Page 16: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Individual Individual characteristics characteristics

associated with divorceassociated with divorceEducation levelEducation level

Those with Those with lower level of educationlower level of education are are moremore likely to divorce than those with higher levels likely to divorce than those with higher levels of educationof education

IQIQ

Higher IQ may indicate greater problem Higher IQ may indicate greater problem solving ability, which may help couples work solving ability, which may help couples work through issues that arise in their marriagethrough issues that arise in their marriage

Page 17: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Individual Individual characteristics characteristics

associated with divorceassociated with divorceRace & EthnicityRace & Ethnicity

Regardless of educational level, African-Regardless of educational level, African-Americans have higher rates of divorce Americans have higher rates of divorce than whitesthan whites

Page 18: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Percent No Longer in First Marriage by Race/Ethnicity

Source: National Survey of Families and Households, 1987

Page 19: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Predicting Predicting DivorceDivorce

Divorce is a process Divorce is a process

Often, there are signs of trouble Often, there are signs of trouble long before the divorcelong before the divorce

People report trouble long People report trouble long before they actually decide to before they actually decide to divorcedivorce

Page 20: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Children & Children & DivorceDivorce

The most talked about consequence The most talked about consequence of divorce is the effect it has on of divorce is the effect it has on children.children.

Given the rates of divorce in the late Given the rates of divorce in the late 1970s and early 1980s, about two-1970s and early 1980s, about two-fifths of all children will have fifths of all children will have experienced a marital disruption by experienced a marital disruption by age 16.age 16.

Page 21: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Children & Children & DivorceDivorce

A major problem is that many women A major problem is that many women and children do not receive child and children do not receive child support, even when it is court support, even when it is court orderedordered

2/3 of families with no father present 2/3 of families with no father present who were supposed to receive child who were supposed to receive child support, actually do receive supportsupport, actually do receive support

Only 48 percent of families actually Only 48 percent of families actually receive receive anyany support support

Page 22: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Child Support Data, Child Support Data, 20072007

Page 23: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Children & Children & DivorceDivorce

Most mothers still retain custody of Most mothers still retain custody of children after a divorcechildren after a divorce

Custody involves decisions about Custody involves decisions about who will have responsibility for the children?who will have responsibility for the children?where will the children live?where will the children live?

Legal custody refers to having the right to Legal custody refers to having the right to make important decisions about the child’s lifemake important decisions about the child’s life

Physical custody refers to where children Physical custody refers to where children actually liveactually live

Page 24: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Children & Children & DivorceDivorce

Most mothers still retain custody of Most mothers still retain custody of children after a divorcechildren after a divorce

Joint custody is becoming more commonJoint custody is becoming more common

Joint legal custody – based on the idea Joint legal custody – based on the idea that parent’s responsibilities towards that parent’s responsibilities towards their children have not changedtheir children have not changed

Joint physical custody - children spend Joint physical custody - children spend at least 33% of their time with each at least 33% of their time with each parentparent

Page 25: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Children & Children & DivorceDivorce

Joint physical custody is growing Joint physical custody is growing

Children spend substantial time in the Children spend substantial time in the household of each parent – but in household of each parent – but in reality mothers still have custody more reality mothers still have custody more of the timeof the time

Page 26: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Children & Children & DivorceDivorce

Father involvement Father involvement

Why do fathers fade from children’s Why do fathers fade from children’s lives after divorce?lives after divorce?

Visits to children are painful Visits to children are painful reminder of failed marriagereminder of failed marriageFathers investing in new family if Fathers investing in new family if they remarrythey remarryCherlin speculates that fathers Cherlin speculates that fathers related only indirectly to children related only indirectly to children through wifethrough wife

Page 27: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Children & Children & DivorceDivorce

Rather than practicing coparenting after a Rather than practicing coparenting after a divorce, most families practice parallel divorce, most families practice parallel parenting: after several years – parents go parenting: after several years – parents go about parenting separatelyabout parenting separately

Father only families are growing rapidlyFather only families are growing rapidly

From 1980 to 1998 – the number of father-From 1980 to 1998 – the number of father-headed families tripledheaded families tripled

19 percent of single-parent families are 19 percent of single-parent families are headed by fathersheaded by fathers

4 percent of all children live in single-father 4 percent of all children live in single-father familiesfamilies

Page 28: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on childrenEffects of divorce on children

Many studies have considered the Many studies have considered the effect of divorce on children’s:effect of divorce on children’s:

①① scholastic achievement scholastic achievement

②② conduct conduct

③③ psychological adjustment psychological adjustment

④④ self esteem self esteem

⑤⑤ social skills social skills

⑥⑥ relationships with parents relationships with parents

But many consequences are difficult to But many consequences are difficult to measure – especially long term effectsmeasure – especially long term effects

Page 29: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on childrenEffects of divorce on children

Short-term effectsShort-term effects1-2 year crisis period1-2 year crisis periodChildren’s lives may be disrupted Children’s lives may be disrupted due to sale of family home due to sale of family home Decline in financial status due to Decline in financial status due to high chance that mom now high chance that mom now supporting family – possibly supporting family – possibly without child support without child support possibly having to reenter the job possibly having to reenter the job marketmarket

Page 30: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on childrenEffects of divorce on children

Long-term effectsLong-term effects

Many studies find that children from Many studies find that children from divorced families experience lower divorced families experience lower levels of well-being across some of levels of well-being across some of these areas than do children from these areas than do children from intact familiesintact families

However, there are many However, there are many inconsistencies in these studies inconsistencies in these studies

Many studies don’t find significant Many studies don’t find significant differences between kids in divorced differences between kids in divorced and intact families  and intact families  

Page 31: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on Effects of divorce on childrenchildren

Long-term effects of Long-term effects of divorce on childrendivorce on childrenResearchers reviewed the literature Researchers reviewed the literature from 1970 to 1980 find overwhelming from 1970 to 1980 find overwhelming evidence that after the initial trauma evidence that after the initial trauma of divorce:of divorce:

children are as emotionally well-children are as emotionally well-adjusted as children from intact adjusted as children from intact families. families.

Page 32: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on Effects of divorce on childrenchildren

Long-term effects of divorce on Long-term effects of divorce on childrenchildrenLong-term studies show that after Long-term studies show that after controlling for socioeconomic status (SES), controlling for socioeconomic status (SES), adolescents who have experienced a adolescents who have experienced a divorce have only slightly lower levels of divorce have only slightly lower levels of adult adjustment. adult adjustment.

Adjustment is measured in several ways: Adjustment is measured in several ways: self-control self-control leadership leadership responsibilityresponsibilityachievementachievementaggressiveness aggressiveness gender-role orientationgender-role orientation

Page 33: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on childrenEffects of divorce on children

Long-term effectsLong-term effects

My new research shows:My new research shows: Children from high conflict Children from high conflict

parents who later separate, are parents who later separate, are less likely to have conflict in their less likely to have conflict in their adult relationships …adult relationships …

compared to kids of high conflict compared to kids of high conflict parents who stayed togetherparents who stayed together

Page 34: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on childrenEffects of divorce on children

Long-term effectsLong-term effects

Other researchers, who collected Other researchers, who collected data on families prior to divorce, data on families prior to divorce, found:found:

Many of the problems that associated Many of the problems that associated with children of divorced families were with children of divorced families were evident before the actual decision to evident before the actual decision to divorce divorce

Thus, researchers argue that Thus, researchers argue that conflict between parents conflict between parents is a is a fundamental factor that harms fundamental factor that harms children’s development and children’s development and produces behavioral problems produces behavioral problems

Page 35: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

Effects of divorce on childrenEffects of divorce on children

Long-term effectsLong-term effects

• In sum, conflict in families may be In sum, conflict in families may be the cause of children’s problems, the cause of children’s problems, not the actual decision to divorce. not the actual decision to divorce.

Page 36: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

DivorceDivorce• SummarySummary

• Divorce has increased steadily over Divorce has increased steadily over the 20the 20thth century century

• The biggest increases were during The biggest increases were during the 1960s-1970’sthe 1960s-1970’s

• Divorce rate has leveled off and has Divorce rate has leveled off and has begun to decline in the past few begun to decline in the past few yearsyears

• Conflict is bad for kids, not Conflict is bad for kids, not necessarily divorce in the long-termnecessarily divorce in the long-term

Page 37: Divorce Family Sociology. Divorce How has the divorce rate changed over time? How is the divorce rate measured? Who is more likely to divorce? What are.

DivorceDivorce• SummarySummary

• Divorce has a greater adverse economic Divorce has a greater adverse economic effect on women than meneffect on women than men

• Short-term effects of divorce on children – Short-term effects of divorce on children – last 1-2 yearslast 1-2 years

• Long-term effects are still debated – more Long-term effects are still debated – more research and better data is neededresearch and better data is needed

• Conflict is the source of negative outcomes Conflict is the source of negative outcomes for kids – not just divorcefor kids – not just divorce