Document Type

Thesis

Degree

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Psychology

Advisor's Name

Gordon Finley

Advisor's Title

Committee Chair

Advisor's Name

Mary J. Levitt

Advisor's Name

Robert Lickliter

Keywords

Troubled Ruminations, Parental Involvement, Divorce, Family Form, Paternal role, Non-resident Fathers

Date of Defense

4-18-2012

Abstract

This study is an exploration of the relationship between retrospectively perceived desired parental involvement and current troubled ruminations about fathers and mothers by young adults. It investigates the impact of family form on desired parental involvement and troubled ruminations. The data were taken from a larger project (Finley, Mira, & Schwartz, 2008), consisting of 1,714 ethnically diverse, young adult university students. The results show a significant correlation between desired paternal involvement and troubled ruminations about fathers (r= .369, p<.001) and a significant correlation between desired maternal involvement and troubled ruminations about mothers (r=.201, p<.001). There was a significantly higher association between desired parental involvement and troubled ruminations for fathers (r= .411) as compared to mothers (r=. 248), p<. 001 in divorced families. Given the current social policies favoring maternal custody following divorce (resulting in lower paternal involvement), a better understanding of the paternal role and its impact may contribute to shaping better family policy.

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