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Divorce rates rose a dramatic 79 percent in Divorce on Children the United States between 1970 and 1977. Although these high rates have since declined, a high proportion of marriages still end in divorce. In the 1970s, children were considered to be better off living with one parent than to live with both parents amidst conflict, abuse, or both. Indeed, there is considerable evidence from numerous research studies that indicate a conflict-ridden marriage is not in the best interest of the children. Sometimes, divorce is the best course of action. However, even under the best of all circumstances, few would argue that children are not affected by divorce. The greatest focus of divorce’s effect on children has been on the weeks, months, and the first few years following the divorce. But what about the long-term effects of divorce? For example, those preschool children who experienced the divorce of their parents in the 1970s and early 1980s have now reached young adulthood. What has been their life experience over the last 20 to 25 years, and how did the divorce impact those experiences? This publication summarizes the findings of several recent studies related to this question. The Reality of Divorce

Regardless of personal values, community standards, or religious teachings, divorce is a fact of life, as shown by these facts: Distributed in furtherance • 2 of 5 children will experience the diof the Acts of Congress vorce of their parents before they reach of May 8 and June 30, 1914. age 18.Employment and program opportunities are offered to • About 25 percent of all children will all people regardless of spend some time in a step-family.

race, color, national origin, • A couple’s marriage lasts about 7.2 sex, age, or disability. North Carolina State University, years prior to divorcing. North Carolina A&T State • Divorce rate leveled in the 1980’s and University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local

governments cooperating.
is now about 11 percent lower...
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