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Divorce and Kids

Divorce and Kids

     Divorce is transforming the lives of American children.In the past World War 2 generation, more than 80 percent of children grew up with both biological parents.  Today only half will do so.  Each year

more than a million children experience family breakup: about as many are born out of wedlock.

     At the same time, the problems associated with family disruption have grown. Overall child well-being has declined,despite historically high public spending. The teen suicide rate has almost tripled. Juvenile crime has increased and become more violent. School performance has been poor.

     In 1971 Judith Wallerstein, a clinical psychologist, and her staff began interviewing middle-class children in the San Francisco area at the time their parents broke up. She discovered the children seemed to be doing worse. Five years after breakup, her research shows, more than a third of the children were experiencing moderate or severe depression. At ten years a significant number to be troubled, drifting, underachieving. At 15 years many, now adults, were struggling to establish strong love relationships of their own.

     Research shows that girls in single-parent families are at greater risk for teenage marriage, nonmarital birth, and divorce than girls in two-parent families---and that this is true regardless of race or income. Also, children in disrupted families are nearly twice as likely to drop out of high school. Boys are at greater risk of dropping out than girls and are more prone to aggressive behavior.

     Over the past 25 years Americans have been conducting a vast natural experiment in family life. The results are becoming clear. Adults have benefited from the changes, but not children. Indeed, this may be the first generation to do worse psychologically and socially than their parents.

     The novelist Pat Conroy has observed that"each divorce is the death of a small civilization. "No one feels this more acutely than children.

 婚与孩子

     婚正在改变美国孩子的生活。在二战後成长起来的一代人中,有80%以上的孩子都在亲生父母身边长大。今天只有50%的孩子是如此,每年有100多丌的孩子经历家庭破裂。这与私生子女的数量大体相当。

    与此同时,由於家庭破裂所带来的问题日渐增多。尽管政府公共开支历来很大,孩子的总体福利却下降了。青少年自杀率翻了三番,青少年犯罪率也上升了,他们的暴力行为也增加了,他们在学校的表现也一直不好。

    1971年,临床心理学家朱迪斯·沃勒斯坦和她的研究人员走访了旧金山地区父母 异的中产阶级家庭的孩子,她发现孩子的情况每况愈下。她的研究发现,在父母 异五年後,有1/3多的孩子患有中度或严重的抑郁症。10年後,许多孩子生活困难,漂泊流浪,学习成绩不理想。15年後,这些孩子长大成人,他们就拼命建立自己牢固的爱情关系。

    研究表明,单亲家庭的女孩比双亲家庭的女孩更可能未成年就结婚,非婚生育,更易於 婚——·不管她们是何种肤色,收入如何,情况都是如此。  同时,破裂家庭的孩子的退学率比健全家庭的孩子的退学率高出一倍。男孩比女孩更易退学,也更容易寻衅闹事。  在过去的25年里,美国人一直在进行家庭生活中的一项自然实验。其结果已日渐明朗。成人从变化中受益而儿童则不然。确实,这可能是在心理上、社交方面比父辈做得更差的第一代子女。

    小说家帕特·康洛伊发现,「每一次 婚都是一个小的文明社会的泯灭。」没有人能比儿童更能感受到这一点了。

  • 关键字 : children, 孩子, years, 女孩, their, parents, girls, family, families, worse, shows, parent, greater, generation, divorce, breakup, Divorce, 非婚生育, 问题, 退学率
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2010-08-07T07:56:00+0000


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