Study finds divorce runs in families and could be genetic

ANI | Updated: Oct 06, 2017 14:56 IST

Washington D.C. [U.S.A], Oct. 6 (ANI): According to a recent study, Children of divorced parents are more likely to get separated when compared to those who grew up in two-parent families, and genetic factors may be to blame

It had been assumed that this may have been down to environmental factors, and the normalisation of divorce to a developing child.

But a new study found that the link does not exist for adopted children, meaning there's a possibility that the likelihood of divorce is genetic.

The study could have implications for how marriage counsellors offer advice to couples whose relationships are on the rocks.

"We were trying to answer the basic question: Why does divorce run in families? At present, the bulk of evidence on why divorce runs in families points to the idea that growing up with divorced parents weakens your commitment to and the interpersonal skills needed for marriage," said study's author Dr Jessica Salvatore.

Adding, "So, if a distressed couple shows up in a therapist's office and finds, as part of learning about the partners' family histories, that one partner comes from a divorced family, then the therapist may make boosting commitment or strengthening interpersonal skills a focus of their clinical efforts."

According to the researchers, the study's findings are significant because they diverge from the predominantly found narrative in divorce literature, which suggests that offspring of divorced parents are more likely to get divorced themselves because they see their parents lacking in commitment or struggling to manage conflict.

As such, this literature suggests that children grow up to internalize that behavior and exhibit it in their own relationships.

Instead, Dr Salvatore suggests, more time should be spent exploring basic personality traits which have been previously linked to divorce, such as high levels of negativity and low levels of constraint.

The study material was provided by Virginia Commonwealth University. (ANI)