2004
Volume 97, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0025-9454
  • E-ISSN: 1876-2816

Abstract

Abstract

Few studies have examined the long-term impact of parental separation on father-child relationships. Moreover, most studies have focused on continuous measures of contact, involvement, and relationship quality. This study focuses on the problem of broken ties, the situation where a relationship no longer exists between father and child. Using unique new survey data collected among adult children ( = 3,062) and their fathers ( = 1,522) in the Netherlands in 2017, we study the prevalence, determinants, and effects of broken ties from both sides of the dyad. We find that about one fifth of adult children no longer had contact with their father when there was a separation in youth. The risk of losing contact was associated with a combination of traditional gender roles in marriage and high levels of interparental conflict. The associations of broken ties with social well-being were modest for children but strong for fathers. Separated fathers who lost contact with their children had lower social well-being than other separated fathers. Moreover, when asked directly, a large majority of these fathers felt that the separation was responsible for the deterioration of the relationships with their children.

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2022-09-27
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