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ERIC Number: ED263475
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Aug
Pages: 13
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Children's Reliance on Denial in Fantasy in Response to Parental Separation and Divorce.
Wax, Susan M.
Divorce can be viewed as a multi-faceted, interactive process which represents a dislocation in the life cycle of a family. A set of critical developmental tasks must be met and mastered for a family to cope with the transition through the divorce experience. The first of these developmental challenges facing the children of divorcing parents is their acceptance of the reality of the parental divorce. A study was undertaken to explore the relationship among attributes of the child, characteristics of the parent-child relationship, and characteristics of the divorcing experience as these variables influence the child's reliance on denial in fantasy as a mechanism of defense in response to parental separation. Latency aged children (N=42) and a matched sample of 30 children from intact homes completed the Child's Report of the Impact of Separation by Parents-Revised, the Children's Personality Questionnaire, and the Child's Cognitive Grasp of the Divorcing Experience measure. Mothers of all the children completed a series of questionnaires designed to measure the variables under investigation. Multiple regression analysis revealed that the most significant predictor of a child's reliance on denial in fantasy in response to parental separation was the set of variables representing the attributes of the child. Specifically, the child's age at the time of parental separation was the most powerful predictor of reliance on denial, representing 41 percent of all variance. These results suggest that very definite age-related responses to parental separation may be observed and that denial will be seen most often in younger children. (NRB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A