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Title: Experiences and challenges faced by adolescents from divorced famalies in the Waterberg District, Limpopo
Authors: Makofane, M.D.M
Mogoane, Olivia Mahlatse
Keywords: Divorce
Issue Date: 2010
Abstract: This research study was inspired by the rise in the number of adolescents who have been charged with misdemeanor. Most of these adolescents came from dysfunctional families. The greater pool research focused on the consequences of divorce on younger children. However, adolescents may be one of the neediest age groups because the divorce experience interacts with the complex developmental changes with which adolescents must cope. Adolescents from divorced families may experience challenges with bodily changes and adjustment to these changes due to a lack of support from both parents. The aim of this study was to explore the experiences and challenges faced by adolescents from divorced families. It was qualitative in nature. A non-probability purposive sampling was employed to select 10 custodial parents who participated. The snowball sampling was utilised to select the 20 adolescents from divorced families. The adolescents‟ ages ranged from 13 to 18 years. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with the help of a semi-structured interview schedule to gather information from all the respondents. The research questions focused on the adolescents‟ feelings and reactions toward parental divorce. The findings indicate that most adolescents despite understanding the reasons for their parents‟ divorce became overwhelmed by the experience. They became withdrawn and some had to mature early and, therefore, lost out on the opportunity to enjoy their childhood. Their education was also disrupted due to their pre-occupation with a variety of needs such as fitting well into peer groups, seeking family security and stressfree relationships with their custodial, non-custodial parents, as well as their siblings. An analysis of these experiences and challenges has provided insight for future intervention programmes to help prevent more serious adjustment problems. It has also exposed the need for awareness raising and expedite provision of therapeutic services to families experiencing divorce. It is hoped that this information will stimulate social workers and other members of the helping professions to enlist their support for children of all ages from broken families. The plight of children from divorced families needs school social workers as they would assist with early identification of children with psycho-social needs as well as providing the necessary professional assistance. If social workers could be deployed at schools they would design intervention programmes to suit the needs of such children. Based on the major findings of the study, the following hypotheses were developed:  If both parents could inform their children of the impending divorce at a level appropriate for each child, children would less likely be traumatised by parental divorce. If parents and adolescents could be provided with post divorce counseling they would alleviate long term emotional complications. If adolescents find their custodial parents to have adjusted well to the divorce they would not be overburdened by the responsibility of taking care of their parents and siblings‟ well-being and, therefore, would focus on their own development.
Description: Thesis (M.A.(Social Work))--University of Limpopo, 2010
Appears in Collections:Theses and Dissertations (Social Work)

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