ERIC Number: ED326801
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Psychosocial Functioning in Homeless and Poor Housed Families.
Walsh, Mary E.
This study was conducted to compare the effectiveness of family functioning in families who have become homeless and poor families who have never been homeless. Relying on the McMaster Model of Family Functioning, it focused on family functioning in terms of transactional patterns or the family's mode of interaction as a unit. Subjects consisted of 18 homeless and 24 housed single mothers. The homeless mothers had a mean age of 25.2 years and an average of 2.8 children. The mean age of housed mothers was 26 years, with an average of 2.2 children. Family functioning was assessed using the McMaster Family Assessment Device, with homeless mothers basing their responses on retrospective judgments. Analyses revealed significant differences between homeless and housed families on several integral areas of family functioning. Results suggest that prior to becoming homeless, homeless families were not likely to be as effective in solving problems, communicating, responding affectively to one another, being involved with other family members, or in general family functioning, as poor housed families. The data do not allow these differences to be attributed to inherent psychological differences. The difficult social and economic circumstances prior to becoming homeless may well impinge on family functioning. (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (98th, Boston, MA, August 10-14, 1990).