Children’s Adjustment to Divorce: Variability Factors


The rate of divorce in the world has significantly increased over the past few decades, and children are usually the most affected. Children are usually forced to adjust to the divorce, and there is often variability as there are several factors that affect their adjustment. In most cases, when parents divorce, children are usually forced to live with one of the parents while the other gets visitation rights or get to spend little time with them. Adjusting to the divorce is one of the hardest moments for the children than the actual divorce. When children find themselves with parents who did not divorce amicable and are still on warring terms, the former find themselves being forced to pick sides as each partner tries to outdo the other. Therefore, this research proposal will seek to find out the factors that produce variability in children’s adjustment to divorce.

Problem Statement

There are several factors that produce variability, making it hard for children to settle after a divorce. A divorce is usually hard for children as they try to settle and live normally as before, but there are factors that hamper this progress. Therefore, the research proposal will seek to find out these factors that produce variability in how children adjust after divorce.

Aims and Objectives

There are several aims and objectives that the research seeks to attain which will ensure that the study is successful. A successful study attains its aims and objectives, and this research seeks to do the same. Therefore, some of the aims and objectives of the research include;

  • Figure out the challenges that children face while trying to adjust after a divorce.
  • Find out the factors that produce variability in children’s adjustment to divorce.

Research Questions

The study will be guided by research questions that will help it achieve its aims and objectives. These research questions seek to make sure that the study is successful. Below are some of the research questions;

  • How are children affected after a divorce?
  • How do children find it hard to adjust after a divorce?
  • What are the factors that produce variability in children’s adjustment to divorce?
  • How do children cope with a divorce?

Literature Review

According to recent studies, many people divorce for a variety of reasons. The main problem is clearly discord between partners, which is mostly recognized by most people. There are also other factors such as having a troublesome life at work or in the family. There is a slow adjustment of one of the parents to life problems, economic difficulty, and having a stressful life, possibly because something has changed in a negative way (Clark-Kazak, 2019). Divorce has a negative impact on children, particularly young children, and most of them end up divorcing their spouses in the future due to a lack of parental guidance.

Key Concepts, Theories, and Studies


Most young children blame themselves for their parents’ divorce and become depressed as a result. Young children from divorced homes are more likely to have psychological issues, and they are more likely to struggle in school due to poor grades (Brand et al., 2019). Furthermore, other children can engage in risky behaviors such as drug and alcohol abuse or robbery.


However, some children may not be affected by the divorce itself, maybe because of the conditions of the lives they are forced to live. Usually, when parents divorce, one of the parents moves out of the house they used to live in and go with their kids, and most of the time, they endure a lot of hardships (Brand et al., 2019). The parent usually struggles to cater for the children’s well-being, and this makes it hard for the children to cope with their new environments. When children move to a new environment, they lose a lot because they must change schools, friends, and possibly their lifestyles (Donahey, 2018). Children are often sad and bitter because they are forced to suffer as a result of their parents’ actions.

Parental Influence

Some parents may also transfer their anger to their children, causing them to have a lot of insecurities and trust issues. The parent may unnecessarily insult and severely beat their children. This frustrates the children, and they can become very hurt; as a result, making their childhood difficult to cope with. Both genders suffer greatly from the effects of divorce, and it all depends on how they deal with the problem and move on with their lives (Mikolai & Kulu, 2018). Divorce has a lot of negative effects on children, but it also has some positive effects on them.

Children’s Decision

Although parents are mostly to blame for the children’s behavior, the child also has a decision to make either to be good or bad according to what they have been taught. This research studies how different children react to various situations and how they adjust to life after their parents’ divorce. Parental influence is indeed one of the major effects on children’s depression, but some children are not bothered as much by their parents, but due to their young age, they tend to involve in drug abuse because they completely lose hope in life.

Personal Statement

Personally, the report thinks most children from divorced families do well in life, but it is dependent on how their parents treat them. If children are shown enough parental love and affection, they can perform better in certain situations and tend to be more critical of life issues. Usually, most people think that divorced families are families that always go through quite a lot of hardships, and certainly not the case. This is because some of the parents know how to play their roles correctly and can act as two parents most of the time and balance them out in a way the children will not feel left out in any case.


Although a single parent goes through a lot, they certainly receive a lot of love from their kids, especially if they treated their kids right. This means there is always something positive they can always get and help them go through certain challenges in life, however hard they may hit them. Although various people have stated how parents should cope with divorce, this research shows and emphasizes how parents can also assist their children in dealing with these issues. It is because they are the only people who have a significant influence on their children. They should strengthen their relationships with their children and be open to them about certain life issues so that the children feel at ease and empowered to deal with certain life issues (Donahey, 2018). Parents should also seek assistance from relatives if they are feeling overwhelmed by certain issues.

Literature Gap

In many of the studies that have been conducted, the children are usually not the major focus on how they struggle to settle down after a divorce. Most studies have discussed how children of divorced parents struggle to relate with society but do not discuss how they struggle to fit in the community (Dohaney, 2018). Therefore, this study will seek to fill this literature gap by discussing the various factors that produce variability in understanding how children adjust after a divorce.

Research Methodology

The research seeks to figure out the different factors that produce variability in children’s adjustment to divorce. The study will be conducted around the university campus as it seeks to attain its aims and objectives. The study will be conducted using a qualitative research method, and the data will be collected using qualitative methods.

Research Design

The study will be conducted using a qualitative research method to achieve the aims and objectives. A qualitative research method collects non-numerical data, and this is often explanatory information. This type of research method collects data using different collection methods such as interviews and semi-structured interviews (Lehmann et al., 2019). A qualitative research design gives respondents to explain more on their feedback and why they chose their specific answers. Therefore, the study design is best suited for this study as it will explain more on the feedback from the respondents. According to Lehmann et al. (2019), the respondents are required to answer the questions in explained responses, and this will ensure that the research collects as much information as possible. Each participant will be allocated enough time to respond to the questions that will be fronted by the researchers.

The study will apply the social constructionism theory in conducting the research. Constructionism is a theory of learning, teaching, and design that claims knowledge is better gained when people construct it themselves (Waite-Stupiansky, 2017). Therefore, the participants of this study are well suited to give the best explanations when collecting data as they have experienced the challenges first hand (Waite-Stupiansky, 2017). Through experience, they will be able to recollect and answer what various factors produce variability in children’s adjustment to divorce.


The sample size of a study should always be determined at the design stage of research. There are several ways in which children are affected by divorce and experience different challenges in trying to adjust. Therefore, the study will collect data from five participants on the school campus who will be randomly selected. The random sampling method will ensure that that study avoids bias as it will hinder the research from attaining its aims and objectives (Etikan & Bala, 2017). The children selected should be teenagers and those who come from divorced families as they are the study targets them. The participants in the research should have also faced challenges in adjusting after a divorce. They will be best suited in giving information on the different factors that produce variability in children’s adjustment to divorce. The participants should also range from the ages of 15 to 19 and must have been living with either of the parents in the past year if they are older than 18.

Procedure for Data Collection

The research will require a systematic way of acquiring the statistical data to come up with a reliable and accurate conclusion to satisfy the investigations. The procedure for the collection of data for this research is as follows:

Seeking Permission to Research Relevant Government Organizations Through Obtaining an Ethical License

The license issued by the relevant government authorities will provide any evidence that the research is legal and does not undermine the laws and abide by the rights of the citizens (Etikan & Bala, 2017). It will also provide entries to the target field, including various institutions such as schools, hospitals, or children’s homes, without form of interference. If the research is useful to the respondents and other stakeholders, they can provide support by permitting access to their databases.

Approach Those Understudies and Request their Participation in the Research

Since most of the people under study will be children paying a pre-visit to the target field will help to prepare them psychologically. Request for their support will avoid any form of rebel and also dispel the fear that will occur during the real-time collection of data (Ghaljaie et al., 2017). It will also create a good reputation for the children under investigation, and this will help in easy interaction between the interviewer and the interviewee; hence accurate data is obtained.

Establishing the Appropriate Method to be Used

After seeking permission from various authorities, it is important to understand your target field and outline appropriate methods to extract data. In this case, children and parents are major targets; therefore, it is important to differentiate the method to collect data from parents and the best method to use on children (Ghaljaie et al., 2017). For instance, parents can fill questionnaires while children can be interviewed.

Data Collection Method

After outlining the systematic procedure for data collection then it is important to understand which the various method is and how they will be used to collect data. These data extraction methods have been discussed below.

Semi-structured Interviews

This will involve one interaction between the interviewer and the interviewee. Children who are affected by divorce will be asked questions concerning various aspects, such as the challenges they faced in adjusting to life after the divorce. The research will make sure that the research gets informed consent from parents of children who are below 18 years old. Data will be collected using tape recorders, and each participant will be allocated 25 to 30 minutes. According to Magaldi & Berler (2020), allocating a similar amount of time to participants will ensure that there is uniformity in data collection. The research will be repeated after two weeks to ensure that the data collected is authentic, and this will help the study achieve its aims and objectives.

Review of the Available Secondary Data

To back up the research, more data will be obtained through access to secondary information from different sources. Information from previous researches on the same topic can be accessed from databases of different children’s organizations across the globe, such as UNICEF. Data can be extracted from journals and articles obtained on the internet written earlier on the same study. In some cases, access to the secondary data from databases of some institutions may be difficult. However, a thorough presentation of the license and presentation of the objective of the study will help (Magaldi & Berler, 2020). Secondary data will also assist in gauging the level of integrity of the data collected on the field.

Data Analysis

After data has been collected, then it has to be made meaningful, and this process is referred to as data analysis. It involves processing and analyzing the data in line with the objectives of the study as stipulated in the research plan. Data analysis is important in any research because it ensures that the researcher has all the information that they need to have relevant comparisons and analyses (Kothari, 2019). Technically, data processing involves proofreading, correcting, coding, classification, as well as representing it in others forms such as tables and charts for easy and efficient analysis.

Analysis refers to the process of computing the data while looking for visible patterns of correlation between the different sets of data. Therefore, during the process of analysis, similarities and differences might support or differ with the existing or new hypotheses. Therefore, the hypotheses and the objectives of the study should be taken through statistical tests to determine the is the data has significant benefits (Castleberry & Nolen, 2018). It also checks its validity if it can help achieve the research objectives. There is no big difference between processing and data analysis since the two processes entail the analysis of data using many techniques to summarize the data and put it in such a way that it can be used to answer the research questions.

In the case of surveys or experiments, analyses involve making estimates of the unknown variables and testing the various hypotheses in the study so that the researcher can come up with inferences. Analyses can be categorized into two, descriptive analysis or inferential analysis (statistical analysis). In this research, a descriptive analysis will be majorly used because it is a qualitative type of research and involves studying the distribution of single variables. The final stage of data analysis is data synthesis, where all the research findings are brought together and harmonized. The data is harmonized in a way that it brings out the submissions of the research participants or the subjects as faithfully as possible devoid of biases (Castleberry & Nolen, 2018). At this level, the data from the participants is filtered, summarized, and put in a way that respects the subjects and still is understood by the readers.

Ethical Considerations

Ethical codes and regulations in research did not exist until the eighteenth century. This was after several instances of human rights were recorded. There are several ethical considerations that will be factored into this research which will ensure that the rights of the participants are protected (Arifin, 2018). Some of the ethical considerations include; the research is scientifically valid, fair sampling is done, and a conducive risk to benefit ratio is taken care of. Other ethical considerations that will be factored in include making sure there is privacy and confidentiality, informed consent, voluntary participation, and much more (Arifin, 2018). Violation of ethics of research arises from a lack of clear guidelines in the ethical issues that researchers should consider to avoid violation of human rights of the subjects. This will go a long way in protecting the researchers’ values, the subjects’ values as well as social values. The professional codes of conduct, the law, regulations, and the various committees should provide guidance and give the final direction on how the research should be conducted.


The research is aimed at figuring out the various factors that produce variability in children’s adjustment to divorce. The report has proposed to conduct the research using a qualitative research design which will be a key factor in attaining the aims and objectives. The report has presented an excellent research proposal that seeks to attain its aims and objectives of the study, and this will ensure success.


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PsychologyWriting. "Children’s Adjustment to Divorce: Variability Factors." August 8, 2022.