Sociology

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Natee’ Hunter
May 26, 2013
Sociology 201/501
Essay Exam #1

Does Divorce Have Long-Term Damaging Effects on Children?

1. No: No Easy Answers: Why the Popular View of Divorce is Wrong written by Constance Ahrons, co-chair of the Council on Contemporary Families, from We’re Still Family: What Grown Children Have to Say about Their Parents’ Divorce.

She explains at the beginning of her article that she was divorced and that the passing of her ex-husband actually brought her and his new family closer together. Ahorns says she has encountered many families whom have had similar experiences.

She goes on to explain that in our culture we don’t want to believe that there is something like a ‘good divorce’. All we ever hear about is the bad situations and outcomes from it. Ahorns explains that maybe if we heard more of the good outcomes maybe our views as a society would be a lot different.

Ahorns brings up seven misconceptions about divorce and defines why they are false. These misconceptions range from the thought of parents should stay together for the kids, children will have lifelong problems, divorce equals a dysfunctional family, divorces takes the father out of the picture, exspouses never get along after divorce, everyone turns into exfamily, and finally stepparents are not real parents. She also brings up that in our society there is no perfect way to raise children. And she does mention that divorce is stressful, yet it is not what brings doom to children’s futures (Finsterbusch 2011:47-54).

2. Yes: The Bad Divorce written by Elizabeth Marquardt, Director of the Center for Marriage and Families, from First Things.
Marquardt as a child grew up in a divorced family and has had many years of researching this very topic. She believes that divorce does create long-term effects on children. She explains in her article that she conducted a survey of 1,500 young adults, like her counterpart Constance Ahrons whom surveyed 173....
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