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Children of Divorce

The Psychological Tasks of the Child
  • Judith S. Wallerstein
Part of the The Springer Series on Stress and Coping book series (SSSO)

Abstract

Divorce represents a special kind of stressful experience for the child who has been reared within a two-parent family. The child’s experience in divorce is comparable in several ways to the experience of the child who loses a parent through death or to the child who loses his or her community following a natural disaster. Each of these experiences strikes at and disrupts close family relationships. Each weakens the protection that the nuclear family provides, leaving in its wake a diminished, more vulnerable family structure. Each traces a pattern of time that begins with an acute, time-limited crisis, and is followed by an extended period of disequilibrium which may last several years—or even longer—past the central event. And each introduces a chain of long-lasting changes that are not predictable at the outset and that reach into multiple domains of family life.

Keywords

Parental Divorce Parental Separation Intact Family Marital Partner Decisive Separation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Judith S. Wallerstein
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for the Family in TransitionCorte MaderaUSA

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